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22

Well, that depends on the individual Thai dish or Indian dish and how it was cooked, of course. But I understand what you're talking about. However, the difference in heat sensations is not due to the kind of pepper employed. It's all about fat, really. Frequently Thai dishes are made with fresh peppers, and have a lot of acid and salt in them (from ...


13

I agree that there is no true substitute, but if I were going to try, I'd use the zest of 1 lime for every 2 kaffir lime leaves. I wouldn't do the bay leaf or lemon thyme suggested above.


13

Peanut butter is just ground roasted peanuts essentially. The american style peanut butter tends to be sweetened, as well as having extra oil and salt. But they are only slight flavour/texture enhancers (not that I think sugar enhances it, UK peanut butter is unsweetened usually). Satay sauces are essentially just peanut butter sauces, roast some peanuts, ...


12

I wouldn't attempt to substitute. I've read somewhere that you can use regular lime leaves, but I've never seen those anywhere. Even Googling for lime leaf turns up kaffir lime leaves. They can be found easily enough online: ImportFood.com. They freeze well for months in just a zip-lock bag. The flavor profile is best described as a bright floral aromatic. ...


12

Even though it isn't really milk (in the dairy sense), coconut milk still naturally separates into a thick cream and thinner liquid like regular milk. As such, when working with coconut milk you should still follow the same procedures you would to make a milk-based cream sauce. The number one rule when making any creamy sauce is: DON'T LET IT BOIL! Boiling ...


11

When you open a can of coconut milk, it usually has separated, with the thick stuff at the top, and more watery business at the bottom. Don't shake or stir it! Start your curry with just the thick stuff, and then thin it as needed with the remainder. I would definitely not add a starch-based thickener. That isn't traditional in Thai curries and will ...


11

It sounds like you're assuming that recipes are scientific creations carefully engineered to achieve a precise result. But most "recipes" are an attempt to relay a rather imprecise series of steps based on available ingredients, familiarity, superstition, and habit in a way that is approximately reproducible by someone else. Even within the bounds of ...


10

Most likely, they are using a softer tofu than you. For whatever reason, the US is infatuated with unusually firm tofu, and supermarkets emphasize the "extra firm" varieties. In Asia, especially Japan and Korea, but even in China, most applications call for a softer, more custard-like tofu. If it's soft inside, when you deep fry the tofu, it should stay ...


9

First, start your Thai coconut curry sauce in a separate pot (i.e. the coconut milk and later the seasonings; no meat , no vegetables, etc.). Make sure to shake the can of coconut milk before opening to ensure it is not separated. Add 1/2 the can to the pot. Bring to boil, reduce temperature and allow the mixture to reduce to almost a paste like texture. ...


8

There are two traditional way to eat curry. Indians typically eat their curry with a type of bread. Usually Naan or Roti and use piece of the bread as a scoop/spoon of sort. Thai curry will tend to be eaten, as you suggested, over top of rice. Typically it is separated when it is served so the rice does not get soggy while it is waiting to be served. The ...


7

Yes, you will need to buy a pre-made curry paste if you want to get anywhere near 5 ingredients. Mae Ploy is a reputable brand.


7

Peanut sauce is one of my very most favorite condiments, I practically consider it a major food group, and I moved from the US to live in another country where peanut butter is not available. Roasted & shelled peanuts are however bountiful and cheap, luckily, so I just learned to make my own peanut sauce. Here's how I make a simple and fast peanut ...


7

1- Remove the hard shell, 2- simmer them in a little liquid until the meat can be easily removed from the seeds. Tamarind is very sweet and very sour. Tamarind chutneys are delicious for a starting point. You can find recipes but not many other ingredients are required. You asked if you have to make it into a paste- I suppose not but cooking them is ...


6

Being a Thai, it's always confusing when I hear the term "red curry" because I am not sure exactly what kind of curry are being referred to. Red curry (Kaeng Ped or literally "spicy soup/curry") is a very general term and includes most spicy curry-based soups without specific names. The most common form of red curry in Bangkok restaurants is one with roasted ...


6

I have just looked in the book "Thai Food" (by David Thompson). Both are very similar. The main difference I can see is that there are souring agents in the red curry (fish sauce and shrimp paste). These are absent in the panaeng which has peanuts as a major ingredient in the paste (and nutmeg). The panaeng is also usually made with beef which is simmered ...


6

It is just the root of the coriander plant. Certainly at least here (UK) you can buy living coriander plants in the supermarket; you could pull one out of the pot and use the root from that. Apparently you can also subsitute 2 stems of coriander for every piece of root called for in the recipe, but I've never tried this.


6

You need to 1) increase the emulsification, and 2) reduce the amount of time the sauce is very hot. You can try adding honey or mustard to the sauce, that will improve emulsification. You can also hit it with a stick blender which will do a much better job of breaking it up than can be done by hand. Also it may look ok after a few hours but who knows how ...


6

Kaffir Lime Leaves are using in Thai and Indian cooking in two ways: They may be added whole to a recipe (such as a soup) and behave like bay leaves; diners take them out and don't eat them. They can be ground fine as part of a spice paste and make the flavoring base for the recipe. There are a few recipes which use slivered kaffir lime leaves, but they ...


6

Aha! Found the answer myself! This recipe includes the step "Garnish with toasted sesame seeds or fried salty mung beans." -- I googled "fried salty mung beans" and found the picture below, which is exactly what I was looking for:


5

In the USA, Coriander is referred to Cilantro, when used in context of herb/green. Possible sources (to purchase Cilantro aka Coriander with root): vendors at some farmer's markets (this is where I get mine) "South East Asian" or "Latin American" grocery stores "Indian" Grocery stores


5

They are simply wide rice noodles. Fish sauce (nam pla), soy sauce, sugar, chilli, garlic, thai basil. There are any number of recipes online.


5

Two things I know can make this difficult: using low-fat coconut milk, or using coconut milk that has had an emulsifier added to it (check the ingredients). Also, you may just not be cooking it long enough or at high enough of a temperature. I think you will really like the results when you get this to work, the curry comes out less gelatinous and more ...


5

Scottish, Use equal amounts of ginger to substitute for galangal. And yes, it is the best substitute available from your average non-Asian grocery store. If you can get your hands on dried, powdered galangal, however, you can do better. Add about half the amount of ginger, and around midway through cooking add a teaspoon of powdered galangal for every ...


5

I am a south Indian who use tamarind in my daily cooking. As previously answered a block of tamarind can be stored wrapped at room temperature. but anything processed like a paste or juice should be refrigerated after opening.


4

If it's not carried in a local Asian market (and they won't order it) then try asking at a local Thai or Asian restaurant. If they're using it they might very likely be willing to sell to you or order from their supplier.


4

Some things I might try: Cornflour or Arrowroot - Normal thickening agents might help Half and Half - Replacing half of the coconut milk with coconut cream. Reducing it down more - this will have the bonus of concentrating the flavour even more. Using less coconut milk overall?


4

This answer is a bit redundant given some of the comments on the accepted answer, but still: Get a brand of peanut butter that's just peanuts. The one I get most of the time is Adam's, but Kraft has one, I've seen Maranatha products, but didn't know they made peanut butter until now. It shouldn't be hard to find something that will work for you.


4

Do you ever deep fry it, or are you always doing a pan-fry/shallow fry? Most of the tofu I see at Thai restaurants is deep fried, which yields the texture I think you are talking about. You may or may not be willing to deep fry at home, but I think if you do you'll get the result you are looking for.


4

The separation you are getting is caused by inadequate mixing of coconut solids and curry paste. This will happen if you add coconut cream at the wrong time (or the wrong way) and you then cook it incorrectly. David Thompson is a world renowned chef and an expert on Thai cuisine. Here's my adaption of Thompson's technique: Place 5 or so tablespoons of ...



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