Monday, September 14, 2009

Thai Jungle Curry with Beef, Gang Pah Neau

I don't know what your jungle looks like, my jungle looks like this - lots of mixed vegetables and herbs and beef. This jungle is wild. It makes my mouth on fire every time I eat it. But, that is a good thing though, according Dr. Oz, spicy food helps booting your metabolism, burning your fat.

Gang Pah, Gang means curry, Pah means jungle in Thai, is once considered as a peasant curry. When you live in the jungle, your foods come from what ever it is the jungle provides you- wild herbs, wild vegetable and wild meats.

Thai eggplant, Kabocha squash (Japanese pumpkin)

Cooking in the jungle with wild meat, which some have a very strong meaty smell, the curry paste using for this kind of curry is made with strong fragrant and spicy herbs to help dilute the scent of the meat.

Today the jungle curry has made its way to the city, so that, in some area, the level of spice has been toned down because of a supermarket meats and vegetables have been used instead of the wild animals out there.

preserved Bamboo Shoot

This is the water base curry.
It's light, but it can make your mouth on fire.

- Gang Pah curry paste (available at Thai groceries)
- Vegetables : Thai eggplants, string beans, preserved bamboo shoot, Kabocha squash, cut them all up into bite pieces.
- Thai basil or holy basil, use only the leaves
- kaffir lime leaves, fresh galangal, julienned
- beef, thinly slice

- fish sauce
- palm sugar(optional)
- water

Gang Pah curry paste

1. Heat up a 5 tbsp. of curry paste with a half cup of water until fragrant then add 3 cups of water more, leave it until boil.

2. putting in vegetable, start with squash since they are the hardest to get soft then follow with others except the basil leave (basil leaves go in last)

3. leave them to reach full boil then season it with fish sauce, start with 2tbsp. then taste it, and you can little by little adjust the taste as you go, too salty add more water.

4. (optional) add a small piece of palm sugar for more rounder taste.

5. With fully boil, in goes beef, stir a few times, add basil leaves, close the lid for a few minutes then turn off the heat, leave it for three to five minutes, and it's ready to serve.

Serve with fried fish or stir-fried vegetable and steamed rice. YUM!

Secret tip:
If you feel that the curry is too watery, before cooking this dish, soak up 1 tbsp. of uncooked rice with water for 1 hour then pound or grind them into powder and add into curry, it will help curry to have more body, just what I like.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Pan-fired Turmeric Red Mullet, Pla Kra Bok Tod Kamin

Red Mullet, my mom favorite fish. She always comes up with delicious recipe with this yummy fish, and this is one of hers that becomes my favorite fish dish ever. It is also another delicious recipe using turmeric powder. You need to add more turmeric to your diet, people. The research shows it helps prevent Alzheimer

I got two Red Mullets for $2.60 from fish store in Chinatown. The fish was very fresh with clear eyes and red gills, and when thing is fresh, it tastes SOoo good.

Easy preparing

- 2 tbsp. turmeric powder
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 15 seeds black pepper
- 2 tsp. salt
- fresh red Mullet, cleaned and scored
turmeric powder

Make the rub and fry

1. using mortar and pestle to crush garlic and black pepper together until it becomes paste then mix in turmeric power and salt.
2. * wear gloves, otherwise your hands will be yellow stained for two weeks* rub the paste all over the fish. If there are any paste lump left, try to put them inside the fish stomach so they will not get burn when frying.
3. Fry them in hot oil and serve.

Warning : Be prepare for the delicious smell that comes out from these garlic, black pepper and turmeric rub, it'll make your stomach groans so bad.

They are golden delicious indeed.
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