Thai Monday Part 7 – Beef Panang

Posted By Stephen

Being a bank holiday today, we took some time to make something for another instalment in the recently neglected Thai Monday series. We chose Beef Panang this time, which is a Thai curry that includes peanuts as well as both coconut milk and coconut cream.

We started by making the paste as usual; this one contained:

Coriander root, salt, dried red chillies (which we de-seeded and soaked), garlic, lemongrass, galangal, red shallots and nutmeg. And peanuts, which weren’t in this picture because we were busy boiling them. These were all ground to a paste, but I think possibly the peanuts weren’t ground quite enough as there were little bits of them in the finished dish.

The finished paste:

The recipe specified stewing beef, which it said to blanch and then simmer in coconut milk for two hours until tender and then slice. So we did. Afterwards, I re-read it and realised that it also said that you could use a more tender cut of beef, slice it thinly and add it at the end to cook through quickly. The latter would have been a much quicker way of doing it, since most of the cooking time for this dish involved waiting for the beef to simmer.

When the beef was cooked and sliced, we heated up some coconut cream until it split, then fried four tablespoons of the paste in it for ten minutes before seasoning with palm sugar and fish sauce. Then we added the beef cooking liquid and the beef itself to warm it through, before adding some deseeded long red chillies, torn lime leaves and torn basil leaves. Served with steamed baby corn and mange tout.

The result was tasty but a bit too sweet, especially for Kerri. We had put in less palm sugar than the recipe specified, but should have reduced it further, knowing that it is usually one of the sweeter Thai curries. It certainly has potential, so one to try again with a few changes – less sugar, bash the peanuts a bit finer, and certainly use the thinly-sliced-beef-at-the-end method rather than the simmer-for-two-hours method.

It did turn out a lovely orange colour though, and with the green of the lime and basil leaves and the red of the chilli, it looked rather a lot like the picture in the book, which doesn’t always happen.

May 26th, 2008

6 Comments to 'Thai Monday Part 7 – Beef Panang'

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  1. Lizzie said,

    This looks gorgeous – it’s so satisfying when things look like the book. I really should try more curry pastes – I find it such a pain in the backside to peel all those shallots, though!

  2. Stephen said,

    Lizzie, Kerri and I were randomly taking and preparing the ingredients one by one off that plate and near the end I managed to sneak in and get the garlic, inadvertently landing her with the shallots 🙂

  3. Happy Cook said,

    Looks so delicious.

  4. Nilmandra said,

    That looks so good! It’s a pity I can’t get many of those ingredients where I live. I’m sure it tasted fantastic.

  5. Antonia said,

    Looks superb – great photo. I want to dive right into it. I quite like some sweetness in a curry so would probably really enjoy this.

  6. Stephen said,

    Thanks everyone!

    Nilmandra, whereabout do you live? There might be somewhere that you could get some or order some from.

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