Just when I think I have run out of Curry inspiration, a little lightbulb goes off in my food obsessed brain and I come up with a corker. Not blowing smoke at all, as there are hundreds of variations of Thai Yellow Chicken Curry that I am sure, are equally as good as this one. There is a little surprise in this one though, that I am yet to witness elsewhere. Baby eggplant, rubbed in the curry paste and baked until golden. The reason for this? Through the roof flavour but also, the eggplant holds together so beautifully once it has been baked. I also made my own crispy shallots (super easy) as I read the back of the packaged ones and they are cooked in palm oil. I happen to like Orang-utans so try and avoid palm oil where possible as it is the logging of their forests and the millions of palm oil plantations taking over that are the biggest threat to their survival. A little bit of the Greenie coming out in me, but hey! Every little bit helps.
Prep time: 20 Minutes Cooking time: 30 Minutes $$ Medium Budget
700gm of chicken thigh fillets, cut into largish chunks
4 baby eggplant, halved lengthways
4 tbs of Em’s Thai Yellow Curry Paste (See link below or use a store bought variety…nowhere near as good 😉
1 brown onion, peeled, halved and sliced top to bottom
200gm of snow peas, tops removed and sliced diagonally
400gm tin of coconut cream
2 tbs of fish sauce
1 tbs of brown sugar
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1 red chilli, finely sliced diagonally (optional)
1 cup of roughly chopped coriander leaves
3 kaffir lime leaves, rolled and sliced very thinly
3 eschalots, peeled and thinly sliced
Peanut oil for frying (any low smoke point oil will do)
Steamed rice, coriander sprigs and lime wedges to serve
Preheat the oven to 200°C
Place the eggplant on a lined baking tray and rub one tablespoon of the curry paste into it so that they are all coated evenly. Place in the oven and bake for approximately 20-25 minutes until golden.
Heat a large pan or wok and add a little oil. Once hot, fry the onion until just starting to soften and then add the remaining curry paste. Fry for 1-2 minutes or until aromatic and then add the chicken. Toss to coat and when the chicken starts to turn opaque, pour in the coconut cream. Stir to combine and once simmering, pop a lid on and allow the chicken to cook for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and add the fish sauce, lime juice and brown sugar and stir to combine. Simmer with the lid off for a further 10 minutes.
While the curry is cooking, place enough oil in a small saucepan or pan to cover the bottom by about 1.5cm. You want the oil nice and hot so that the eschalots crisp up quickly. You can test the oil by placing a piece of eschalot in and if starts bubbling rapidly right away, the oil is ready. Fry the eschalots in two batches until nice and golden, remove with a slotted spoon and allow to drain on a plate lined with paper towel.
Remove the eggplant from the oven and add it to the curry with the snow peas. Allow to simmer for a few minutes until the snow peas are a gorgeous, bright green colour before stirring through the chopped coriander.
Divide the curry in bowls with steamed rice, giving each person two halves of the eggplant. Garnish with crispy shallots, coriander sprigs, a sprinkle of kaffir lime leaf and lime wedges if you so desire.