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Panang Beef

The smell of Thai Panang curry dominates the air of my kitchen today. The smell of kaffir lime leaves seduced every soul in wondering where my simmering Panang beef is. The pungent aroma is so intensify when I first stir fry the fresh homemade Panang curry paste in coconut cream and the fragrances of every fresh herbs used muddle in the rich thick red sauce.

Homemade Panang Curry paste is really simple to make at home as long as you can track down all fresh ingredients. Traditionally we pound all herbs and spices together in the mortar to slowly bring out the beautiful aromas of the ingredients, nowadays the speedy measure of food processor helps us instantly make the luscious curry paste in a minute.

Authentic Thai Panang Curry Paste

12-15 dried red chilli- deseeded and soaked in warm water

1/2 cup chopped garlic

1/2 cup shallots

Rind of 2 whole kaffir limes

5-6 kaffir lime leaves- finely sliced

1 stalks lemon grass- finely sliced

3 tbsp finely chopped fresh galangal

Few fresh coriander (leaves, stem, root)- finely sliced

1 1/2 tbsp coriander seed- dried roasted

2 tsp cumin seed- dried roasted

2 tsp shrimp paste


  1. Double wrap shrimp paste in aluminum foil neatly and roast in over the medium heat for few minutes and keep aside.
  2. Add everything including shrimp paste in food processer and grind until smooth paste or slowly add one by one ingredient in the mortar and grind until smooth.
  3. Use the paste as in the recipe or keep in the clean jar in refrigerator upto a month.

Panang curry looks really similar to Thai red curry, except the intense aroma of Panang curry is distinguished and reigned by more the amount of Kaffir lime rind and toasted spices.

The body of Panang curry is thicken by fresh coconut milk and cream. Coconut cream gives a humble sweetness and dims the heat down. The creamy dense Panang curry melts and oozes down to hot rice, it is effectively satisfies your curry craving.

Panang Beef

Ingredients: (4 servings)

300 gm beef fillet- sliced 1 1/2 inch strips

2 tbsp Panang curry paste

1 tsp sugar

1 tbsp fish sauce or to taste

1 1/2 cup coconut milk

1 1/2 cup coconut cream

Few kaffir lime leaves


  1. Heat 1/2 cup of coconut cream in the medium pot over the medium heat, and add panang curry paste. Stir fry until fragrant and the oil rise to the surface, add more coconut cream if the paste become to dry.
  2. Add beef and stir for few minutes.
  3. Add coconut milk and bring to boil. Simmer further for 10-15 minutes or until the beef is cooked and tender.
  4. Add fish sauce and sugar for seasoning.
  5. Add the rest of coconut cream and cook further until the curry sauce is about to bubble.
  6. Add more kaffir lime leaves for garnishing and serve hot with rice.

Our Panang curry was so rich and creamy. The meat was so tender and almost melted into the thick aromatic sauce. Every bite of it was a pleasurable experience. It wasn’t so spicy but very complex and flavourful. The smell of Panang curry made my house smell exotic and redolent the whole day.

Have you ever tried Thai Panang curry? What’s the dish that smells the most amazing to you?

Take care,


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