Thai Green Curry Meatballs

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IMG_20150308_154819[1] 10/03/2015

This recipe takes a little while to come together but is totally worth the effort. The fresh, zesty paste is better than anything you will get shop bought and the addition of such flavours as ginger and fish sauce to the meatballs really adds zing while the lemon juice will break down the proteins in the pork for a meltingly tender meatball.

I left the seeds in all the chillies used in this dish and be warned, these meatballs pack some punch so consider removing the seeds if you don’t like spice but with the freshness from the lemongrass and the creaminess from the coconut sauce, the heat is great!

Serves 2.

Ingredients:

Thai green curry paste:

  • 2 tsp of ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp of ground cumin
  • 2 green chillies, stems removed and chopped
  • 2 medium stalks of lemongrass, finely sliced
  • 1″ chunk of galangal or ginger, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 3 medium shallots, chopped
  • Zest of 1 small lime
  • 8 whole black peppercorn (or equivalent amount of ground black pepper)
  • 2 tsp of Thai shrimp paste
  • 2 tsp of fish sauce
  • 1 tsp of finely minced kaffir lime leaves (about 2 leaves)
  • 1 tsp of yellow mustard
  • 165ml can of coconut milk

This is quite a runny paste because of the amount of coconut milk used. I have increased the amount of coconut milk as I am using a blender to create a upper smooth paste and the liquid content helps to mix and break down the tougher fibres of the lemongrass and galangal.

To make the curry paste:  Dry-toast ground coriander and ground cumin in a skillet over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant, approx 1 min.  Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smoothly pureed.  You may need to stop the blender and press down the ingredients a few times to get it going.  Store the curry paste in an air-tight container in the fridge until needed.

Meatballs:

  • 200g of minced pork
  • 2 tbsp of finely chopped coriander
  • 1 tbsp of grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 2 tsp of cornflour
  • 2 tsp of fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp of ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp of ground white pepper

To cook the curry:

  • 1 quantity Thai green curry paste
  • 6 – 7 kaffir lime leaves, torn slightly by hand
  • 2 Thai green chillies, chopped
  • 165ml can of coconut milk
  • 200ml of water, approx
  • 1-2 tsp of grated palm sugar or dark brown sugar
  • More fish sauce to adjust seasoning
  • 1 handful of Thai basil or coriander leaves
  • Green beans, peas (optional)

Method:

To prepare the meatballs: Mix the pork mince, chopped coriander, grated ginger, lemon juice, cornflour, fish sauce, ground coriander and ground white pepper together.  Divide and shape the mixture into 8 meatballs then brown the meatballs in a frying pan with a teaspoon of rapeseed oil until golden all over.

To make the green curry:  In the same frying pan or a wok, heat and stir the green curry paste over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes, until the moisture evaporates a little.  This process might splatter a bit, so you might want to cover the pan/wok partially with a lid. The mixture will brown slightly be careful not to let it burn.  Add 3 kaffir lime leaves and green chilli, and cook for another minute, then add coconut milk and water.

Add the browned meatballs into the pan/wok with 1 tsp of palm sugar (or dark brown sugar) and 2 tsp of fish sauce.  Turn the heat down and simmer for 30 minutes stirring occasionally. If the sauce has thickened too much just add a little more water. Adjust the seasoning with more fish sauce and sugar if needed.  Add green beans or peas if using and cook for 5 more minutes. Add 1 handful of Thai basil and let it wilt. If you cannot find Thai basil you could sprinkle with coriander leaves instead. Serve immediately with hot steamed jasmine rice or rice noodles.

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