Sweet coconut milk is balanced by serrano chiles, lemongrass and lime juice for a rich broth that perfectly poaches shrimp and vegetables. In Thailand, green curry paste—a mix of aromatics, herbs and spices, pounded together in a mortar and pestle—is used to flavor sausages, egg dishes, marinades, sauces, stir-fries and curries like this one. Here, a blender takes the place of the mortar and pestle and instead of using makrut lime leaves in the paste, it’s turned into makrut lime leaf oil that’s drizzled on the final dish to dial up the floral, citrus notes.
Put the kaffir lime leaves and 1/3 cup of the oil in a blender. Set at the blender's lowest speed, start the blender and slowly increase the speed to high. Blend for 25 seconds. Transfer to a small bowl and let sit for 5 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean small bowl and reserve. Clean the blender carafe.
Put the cilantro, chiles, garlic, shallots, ginger, lemongrass, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/3 cup water in the blender. Set at the blender's lowest speed, start the blender and slowly increase the speed to medium-high. Blend for 40 seconds to make a fine puree, stopping once to scrape down the sides of the carafe.
Heat the remaining 1/4 cup oil in a large high-sided skillet over medium heat. Carefully add the cilantro puree. Cook, stirring constantly, until thick and olive green, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the fish sauce and brown sugar. Cook 1 minute more, then add the coconut milk and 1 1/4 cups water. Add more salt and fish sauce if desired. Bring to a simmer and cook gently for 5 minutes.
Turn the heat to medium-low and add the shrimp and lime juice. Cover and cook until the undersides of the shrimp are beginning to turn pink, about 3 minutes. Flip the shrimp, cover and cook for 2 minutes more. Add the tomatoes and snow peas, cover and cook until the shrimp are pink on both sides and cooked through, about 1 minute more.
Ladle the curry into 4 soup bowls. Sprinkle with cilantro leaves and drizzle with some of the kaffir lime oil.
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