Thai cuisine is centered around homemade Thai curries, whether it’s a stir-fry of vegetables or fish patties.
Thai is my favorite cuisine to cook and share, along with Italian and Mediterranean. You can store homemade Thai curry pastes in the fridge for several weeks or buy a ready-made paste. The pastes are the core of Thai cuisine, whether you serve a coconut curry or fish patties. I will occasionally substitute vegetables and tofu for meat, as I did for this simple red curry.
1. Tofu firm can be diced into 1-2 inch cubes.
2. For color, texture, and delicious nuttiness, brown for 30 seconds on each side. Then fold in, coat, and heat through before serving.
3. All three curry pastes, red, green, and yellow, are blended with earthy spices and chili peppers that numb.
4. For a bright and herbal aroma, authentic recipes may even include hints of umami-rich paste fish and fresh cilantro and lemongrass roots.
The best wines to pair with Thai food are off-dry Alsatian Riesling or Austrian Riesling.
1. Melt butter in a large pan. Add ginger chili. Add cloves, cardamom, cassia and cinnamon. Sauté on medium heat until fragrant.
2. Slowly “sweat” the chopped onion until it becomes translucent. Stir in tomato paste, all spices, and the cream. Reduce heat to simmer and add cream. Finish butter gravy by adding honey, fresh cilantro, and salt to give it a lively flavor.
Make this gravy, and store it in an airtight jar in the refrigerator. It will only intensify its flavor. Bring sauce to a boil, and then add the char-broiled curry chicken thighs.
Enjoy this comforting dish from another planet with your best friends. If Indian Nashik or Chenin Blanc are out of your reach, try something with a fruity character, a hint of off-dry, or an extra dose to cool down the mildly spiced curry. Rajat Parr, an Indian wine expert, believes that wines that would normally pair well with Indian flavors, such as Champagne and Pinot Noir, can be easily lost. He suggests alternatives such as demi sec sparkling or petillant naturels. Off-dry South African Chenin blanc, German Spatlese Riesling, such as the ’99 Dr. Wagner – Somm Selection, or Paso Robles Mourvedre (Tablas Creek Vineyard is yum!) All of these wines would make for a very pleasant drink.