Panang Curry Paste

coverPanang, also spelled Phanaeng or phanang, is a type of red Thai curry that is thick, salty and sweet, with a nutty peanut flavor. Loads of fresh, fragrant herbs and spices go into the paste. But don’t be put off by the long list of the ingredients. All of them require little to no preparation and are simply tossed in a food processor or chopper and easily blitzed. If you have trouble in finding Thai shrimp paste, you can use Japanese red miso which guarantees the authentic, rich and complex flavour the paste is meant to have.

Makes 1 cup

  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 12 cloves, garlic, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons, cilantro stems
  • 20-30 dried red chili depending on your tolerance level of spiciness, softened in warm water
  • 2 teaspoons, white peppercorns, dry-roasted
  • 1 big thumb of galangal
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, white parts only香茅, roughly cut
  • 2 shallots, peeled小红葱头
  • 2 teaspoons, kaffir/lime leaves or lime zest
  • 2 teaspoons of Thai shrimp paste, or use 2 tablespoons of red miso
  • 7 to 8 tablespoons of unsalted peanuts, dry-roasted
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup, waterIMG_5746


  1. Place all the ingredients into a food processor, blender or chopper. Add 1/3 to ½ cup of water to help the machine running. Blender till the mixture becomes paste. The paste does not have to be very smooth. Transfer to a jar with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate until ready to use.



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