With a veritable rainbow of Thai curry pastes available on our supermarket shelves, it can be tricky to know which curry pastes pairs best with different meats and seafood. Read up on the basic difference between Thai red, yellow and green curries, then find the perfect partner in our easy guide below.
Made from exotic herbs such as kaffir lime, coriander, lemongrass, galangal and green chillies, Thai green curry paste is one of the spiciest styles of Thai curry. This aromatic paste works a treat with proteins that aren’t too rich or flavoursome, and don’t require too much cooking time – think lean beef fillet, chicken breasts, tofu, or a mild fish such as barramundi.
Thai red curry paste gets its colour and flavour from the addition of dried red chillies, cumin and coriander seeds. In terms of heat levels, red sits comfortably between green and yellow. The roasted spices add a warmth, gentle sweetness and depth to the curry, making it ideal for slightly richer proteins such as duck, salmon and prawns.
Popular in the coastal areas of Thailand, Thai yellow curry is a milder curry paste flavoured with turmeric and Indian-style curry powder, which was originally introduced to mask any strong flavours from the local fish and seafood. In keeping with the coastal inspiration, try this mellow yellow curry of Moreton Bay bugs or prawns.
For massaman curry, you want a full-bodied protein that can handle the rich, sweet flavours of the curry paste. Classic massaman meats include beef chuck for slow braises or rump steak or fillet for a shortcut version, like this massaman beef curry recipe. For a modern take on massaman, why not try this restaurant-style recipe for massaman lamb shanks, garnished with golden cubes of fried potato.
For more inspiration, try 8 easy Asian recipes for curries, stews and soups using winter vegetables.
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