THAI CHICKEN PANANG CURRY RECIPE (PANANG GAI)
Although beef is the most common meat ingredient of panang curry, however chicken, pork, liver and fish can easily be used instead. Usually panang curry does not include any vegetables, but the small bitter eggplant is a great way to infuse some additional flavours.
Panang curry originally came from Malaysia, where it was named after a northern Malaysian state and it combines tastes from Malaysia, Myanmar and India. It is a bit thicker than the other popular Thai curries and has a richer taste and creamier texture.
Regional variations of Thai Chicken Panang Curry do exist. Parts of Thailand (or even individual cities), which are located on or close to the coast, will often add more shrimp, crab and squid, this is readily available, fresh and cheap. In land, quite often more fish will be added, as this is far easier to obtain fresh in an area that does not have access to freshly caught seafood.
Thai Chicken Panang Curry has a very distinctive taste; it is intended to be both spicy and sour at the same time. When a chef gets the recipe right, then this taste is perfectly balanced.
Because of this strong flavour, which can be quite challenging even for Thai people, a plate of Thai Chicken Panang Curry is usually eaten quite slowly, allowing the taste buds to recover between spoonfuls. Also due to this taste, it is often ordered as an accompaniment to beer or whisky, much in the way we order bar snacks in the Western World. It is quite a culinary experience to set your taste buds afire with a spoon of spicy Thai Salad, and then drink a little beer to help soothe the burning sensation and take away the sour taste.
Ingredients for 4 people:
- 400g chicken
- 3 tablespoons panang curry paste
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 Can of coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons palm sugar
- 6 kaffir lime leaves, (frozen or dried)
- 1 tablespoon of garlic (chopped)
- 10-15 Thai sweet basil (or Italian basil)
- 200g pea aubergine
- 2 red Thai chillies (sliced for garnish)
- Thai jasmine rice
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Ready In: 20 minutes
- 1. Cut the chicken into edible chunks (about 1 inch). Shred both the kaffir lime leaves and the basil leaves, making sure the basil leaves are shredded quite fine.
- 2. Heat half the coconut milk in a wok till the oil appears on the surface. Then add the curry paste and stir continuously till the red oil separates.
- 3. Add the chicken and cook for about five minutes till it's done. Then add the remaining ingredients (apart from kaffir leaves and basil leaves) and stir well. Simmer for about fifteen minutes.
- 4. Add the shredded kaffir lime leaves and basil leaves and stir fry for a couple of minutes.
- 5. Garnish with sliced red chillies. Serve hot accompanied by Thai jasmine rice