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Balancing your curry
Nat visutthikraisee, natv@windowslive.com
A curry soup is sweetly scented with coconut milk, creating a nice contrast with spiciness, arousing one's appetite.

When cooking the curry, the heat level depends on the ratio of curry paste to coconut milk. Spicy curry normally comprises of curry powder, onion, garlic, ginger, tamarind and coconut milk. Coconut milk actually mellows out the spiciness. The aroma of coconut is the key to make the curry soup utterly delicious.

  "If you really think the curry is to hot, reduce chilli, or add two tea spoon of coconut milk."  

Coconuts are plentiful in tropical region and much of the archipelago. That's why coconut milk is used as a cooking base in many recipes, particularly in the cuisine of Thailand and other South and Southeast Asian countries, West Africa, Hawaii and the West Indies.

Thick coconut milk is for savoury dishes and desserts while thin milk is for soups. The leftover pulp is shredded and mixed with vegetables or turned into the sweet and spicy serudeng, sprinkled on rice or added to beef.

  "Two of my favorite ways to use coconut milk in cooking are in curries and as a means of adding a nice creamy texture to shakes." --- Graeme Thomas

Rafael Torres Lopes

Coconut milk is the base of most Thai curries. Contrary to western ideas of working with cream, to make the curry sauce, coconut cream is first reduced over fairly high heat to break down the cream and allow the oil to separate. The curry paste is then added and fried in the coconut oil until all the herb and spice flavors are released and blended before the rest of the coconut milk is added to make the sauce.

Finished Thai curries will have a thin layer of oil floating on top of the sauce. This oil picks up the color of the curries - bright red for red curry, glistening green for green curry, and so on - giving them a lovely appearance rather than a dull, whitish sameness. The color serves as a reminder of their true nature - spicy hot from red and green chillies and not creamy and bland.

While balance the taste, enhancing the intended spice flavors in the curry paste, coconut milk also give your curry the authentic shiny looks. The key to cooking curry like a pro is to treat your coconut milk right.


Red Curry
Source : www.thairapide.co.uk

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