Thai Red Curry

kaeng phet daeng kai

This is an authentic Thai recipe from Muoi Khuntilanont's Kitchen. The recipe was written up by Muoi's husband, Ian Philpott.


The Thai name of this dish literally means "hot red chicken curry".There is a very similar recipe for a green curry (Gaeng Khiao Wan Kai). Though in Thai restaurants in the west, green curry is often the hottest style of curry, as the name indicates, this red curry is generally the hottest in Thailand. If you reduce the amount of curry paste to ameliorate the heat, the resulting dish will lose its red coloration. To offset this you can add a little tomato paste to the mixture.

  • 1 cup chicken (in smallish bite sized pieces)
  • ½ cup of coconut milk
  • ½ cup makhua puang (Thai eggplant - these are small round eggplants)
  • 3 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 2 tablespoons nam pla (fish sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon sweet basil
  • 1 tablespoon palm sugar
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves (or a little lime zest)


Cut the chicken up, then briefly fry the curry paste until fragrant, reduce the heat, add the coconut milk slowly, and continue to stir whilst cooking until a thin film of oil apppears on the surface. Skim off the oil, and discard it.

Add the chicken and other ingredients except the eggplant. Bring to a boil and cook until the chicken begins to change colour. Adjust the flavors to suit yourself. When it is at a boil again add the eggplant and continue till thechicken is cooked through.

Serve with steamed white Jasmine rice.