Massaman is a rich and relatively mild Thai curry. It is thought to come to Thailand from Persia or India about 250 years ago. The recipe calls for typical Indian spices such as cinnamon sticks, cardamon and caraway which are not common in other Thai curries. Most spices used in the curry paste are roasted, giving the curry a rich and smoky flavour. Homemade Massaman curry paste fills your kitchen with a divine tropical holiday mood. It is easy to make, although getting all the ingredients might be hard for some.
Beef, lamb or chicken go well with Massaman. Stewing beef or diced lamb work better than leaner and more expensive cuts. They are meltingly tender and have fantastic flavours, when cooked slowly. But If you are short of time, go for chicken thighs or chicken legs bone in.
Traditionally Massaman is served with hot Thai rice and cucumber vinaigrette.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 mins to 2 hours depending on cuts of meat.
500 g chicken drumsticks or thighs boned in
3 tbsp Massaman curry paste ( homemade or shop bought)
1 cup coconut cream
2 cups coconut milk
3 large potatoes, peeled and quartered
3 small onions , peeled and quarterd or half and fluted as shown in the photo
2 tbsp roasted peanuts chopped
5 white round cardamoms, pan roasted
1 cinnamon stick, pan roasted
3 bay leaves
3 tbsp coconut sugar
3 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp tamarind concentrate ( I use fresh tamarind soak in water)
2 tbsp fish sauce
Bring coconut milk to a gentle boil in a large saucepan and simmer chicken for 20 mintues.( longer if you use lamb or beef).
In a frying pan, simmer coconut cream for a couple of minutes then add the curry paste and saute until fragrant. ( You are waking up the curry paste so it releases the flavour). Take it off the heat and pour it over the chicken and mix well.
Add peanutes, sugar, fish sauce, tamarind juice, and lime juice.
Add onions, potatoes, bay leaves, cardamoms and cinnamon stick. Simmer until the potatoes are cooked through.