Friday, November 25, 2011

Shrimps and Asparagus Stir-Fly in Red Chili Paste

Red chili paste is widely used in Thai food such as red curry soup, fish cake, or for quick stir-fry.  The ingredients of basic red chili paste include red chilies, garlic, shallots, galangal, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaf, and a pinch of sea salt.  I remember helping my dad pounding chili paste with a granite mortar and pestle that was so heavy for a 9 years old girl while he was preparing meat and telling me all the techniques I should know about cooking with chili paste, or sometimes just stories of what was happening at his sugarcane plantation.  And I'm not joking, he cooked with chili paste a lot! I guessed he liked spicy food and that how I get that from. I love spicy food, too.  But since I moved to the U.S,, I found myself a little difficult to find all the ingredients I need to make chili paste especially kaffir lime leaf and fresh galangal.  It takes me for a while to find out where I can find what I need.  Therefore, I don't have a heavy mortar and pestle with me so I use a food processor to make chili paste...huh..easy does it!

This quick and easy dish can be served as a one dish fast food for both at lunch time and dinner.  If you have all the ingredient ready, it only takes about 10 minute to make. 

Shrimps and Asparagus stir-fry in Red Curry Paste over jasmine rice

What you need: 2-3 servings
1 lb. fresh shrimps
1 bunch asparagus
1 tbsp chili paste
1/2 cup chopped white onion
1 medium chopped red bell pepper
2 leaves finely chopped kaffir lime leaf or if it unavailable you can just use basil leaves
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp sugar
- canola oil for cooking
- cooked jasmine rice

How to:
- Add about 3 tbsp canola oil into a wok in medium to high heat.  when the oil is getting hot, add chili paste and stir it all around quickly.
- Add shrimps and onion stir for about 5-7 minutes and then add asparagus and red bell pepper, stir.
- Add sugar and fish sauce and continue cooking for 3-5 minutes or until the asparagus is cooked through.  If the wok gets too dry, add a little bit of water, a few tablespoon at a time.
- Turn off the heat and add kaffir lime leaf or chopped basil leaves at the end
- Serve immediately over cooked jasmine rice.

Enjoy!    ^__^

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