Thai panang curry can be made with either beef or chicken, according to your preference. Panang curry (also spelled 'Penang' like the northern Malaysian state) carries with it flavors and aromas of distant places - you'll find references to Malaysia, India, and Burma. With its homemade combination of spices and fresh herbs, this Panang Curry Chicken is super delicious and easily made from scratch. Enjoy this sumptuous homemade Thai recipe, direct from my kitchen to yours!
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
- 1 small chicken, or 1/2 medium-large chicken cut up into pieces (or the equivalent of beef)
- 3 tomatoes, cut into wedges
- 1 red bell pepper or sweet red pepper, sliced
- 2 kaffir lime leaves, or substitute bay leaves
- 1/2 loose cup fresh basil leaves, left whole or roughly chopped if leaves are large
- CURRY SAUCE:
- 4 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 small onion, quartered
- 1 thumb-size piece galangal OR ginger, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1/2 tsp. dark soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp. fish sauce
- 1 tsp. shrimp paste
- 1 Tbsp. paprika
- 1 Tbsp. chili powder
- 1/2 tsp. ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp. whole cumin
- 1-2 red chili, minced, OR 1/2 to 1 tsp. cayenne pepper or chili flakes to taste
- 1/2 tsp. turmeric
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
- 1 can good-quality coconut milk
- juice of 1/2 lime
- To make the curry sauce, place all sauce ingredients - except the whole cumin seeds - in a food processor. Process well.
- Pour sauce into a cassarole dish. If you'd like more sauce, add up to 1/2 cup good-tasting chicken stock and stir together. Now add the chicken pieces along with the cumin seed plus lime leaves or bay leaves. Mix well.
- Cover and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes. Note: this curry would traditionally be simmered over a stovetop or wood fire. I've taken the liberty of adjusting it to an oven recipe for ease of preparation, but feel free to simmer it on your stovetop if desired, being sure to cover it and stir occasionally until cooked.
- Remove from oven and add the tomatoes and peppers. Stir well, then return to oven to bake another 15-20 minutes, or until both chicken and vegetables are cooked.
- Do a taste test: add more fish sauce if not salty enough; if too spicy, add more coconut milk or a little yogurt. If too salty, add more lime juice.
- Sprinkle with fresh basil leaves and serve with plenty of Thai jasmine rice (white or whole-grain). ENJOY!