Red Curry Paste

My version of Thai red curry 


1 ounce dried, New Mexico Chili peppers w/out the stems     

1-2 Chile de Arbol peppers about 3"

2 teaspoons cumin seeds 

2 teaspoons coriander seeds 

1.5 teaspoons mixed color peppercorns

1.5 tablespoons finely grated galangal root

2 tablespoons finely grated lemongrass (fresh only)

2 teaspoons finely chopped kaffir lime leaf

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic 

2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro stems

½ cup diced shallots

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon "Por Kwan" shrimp paste (Amazon or grocery)

1 teaspoon fine, sea salt 

Mini food processor, blender or mortar & pestle. 


Notes: New Mexico Chili peppers are a mild pepper.  The Chile de Arbol peppers are hot.  If using a different shrimp paste, measurement will be different.  

Remove the seeds from peppers and chop.  Place in a bowl, cover with boiling water and let soak 15-20 minutes, until softened.  Remove from bowl and press or squeeze out water. Place in the mini food processor.

Toast the cumin seeds in a small pan over medium-high heat, until aromatic.

Repeat with the coriander seeds and place both in a mortar & pestle.  Add the peppercorns with the cumin and coriander and grind until fine.

Pour the ground spices into the mini food processor, add the remaining ingredients and pulse until pureed. Place in an airtight container until ready to use.


Curry paste must be cooked in oil before using.  Add coconut milk and broth, then sieve before serving.