Curry pastes are nothing new to the Thai kitchen as they basically live with them. The loaded flavors of these relishes are universal in a majority of their dishes. So, in this article, we hope to tackle everything about the Thai green curry paste ingredients.
The ingredients in this paste include spices and herbs like:
- Green chilies
- White pepper
- Cumin seeds
- Coriander seeds
- Coriander root (cilantro root)
In addition to these, some recipes may also include turmeric, Thai basil leaves, and coriander leaves. Other Thai green curry paste ingredients usually include shallots, salt, shrimp paste, kaffir lime peel, etc.
There’s a lot more we have to share with you. So, read further to clear all your doubts about this incredibly flavorful Thai delicacy!
Thai Green Curry Paste And Its Ingredients
This paste is vibrantly green in color, and Thai people are more enthusiastic about making their own batches at home whenever possible. However, the recipes do not differ much in their content.
In fact, a similar set of spices, herbs, and other staple flavorings apparently show up in a majority of homemade and pre-packaged products. This paste has a more herbal kick than other well-known pastes in Thai cuisine, like red curry paste or yellow curry paste.
Many signature Thai dishes feature this paste, such as:
- Gaeng Khiao Wan Gai (Thai Green Curry with Chicken)
- Vegan Thai Green Curry
- Thai Green Curry Noodle Soup
- Green Curry Fried Rice
- Thai Green Curry Stir-Fry
All these recipes are bestowed with the ultimate green hue and the herbal undertone of the paste mixed with its exotic flavors.
What Is Thai Green Curry Paste Made From?
As mentioned earlier, it is a blend of spices, herbs, and other flavorings. The description of each spice and herb is stated down below.
01- Green Chilies
Green chilies are considered the heart of this paste. In fact, this is the base flavoring that gives the spiciness and the color. Traditionally, Thai green chilies are employed in this paste which marks about 50,000-100,000 SHU (spice heat scale) on the Scoville scale.
The level of spiciness can range from moderate to hot, and it always depends on the amount of green chilies used. Moreover, if the chilies are used with seeds and membranes, the spiciness can be doubled.
However, some homemade recipes also use green cayenne peppers. And any type of green chilies that could give a similar spiciness to the Thai ones would be perfect with the paste.
Pungent, aromatic, and intensely flavored garlic gives an incredible punch to this paste. And, it is one of the significant reasons why none of the green curry paste recipes skip this ingredient out.
The flavor profile of garlic pairs particularly well with green chilies, galangal, shallots, and pepper used in this. The taste is not overwhelming and would give a perfect overall garlicky flavor in most curries, soups, stews, etc.
The spice icon of Thai cuisine- galangal, is a megastar and considered one of the staple Thai green curry paste ingredients. This is similar to ginger but has a more robust, citrusy flavor and a wonderful, strong pine-like aroma.
Some people even use ginger instead of this spice, but galangal gives quite a different zing to this curry paste. It undoubtedly gets along well with garlic, green chilies, and shallots in the mix.
04- White Pepper
Incorporating white pepper in this paste will bring out a more enhanced peppery punch. Admittedly, white pepper is milder than black pepper with a somewhat fermented, musty, and grassy flavor profile.
It simply pairs well with all the other ingredients in the blend itself and gives a lovely taste to many stir-fries, soups, rice dishes, etc.
05- Cumin Seeds
The warmth and nutty, slightly sweet, and earthy undertones of cumin seeds give a unique flavor to our subject leader. Therefore, many green curry paste recipes include ground cumin for an added zest.
Cumin seeds team up well with coriander seeds, galangal, and green chilies in the paste.
Did you ever think about what differences you could experience with Thai red curry paste and green curry paste? If that ever left you in doubt, click here. We will get you covered by our fully explained article about Thai green curry paste vs red curry paste.
06- Coriander Seeds
Ground coriander seeds are one of the most authentic Thai green curry paste ingredients, giving a distinctive taste. This spice is often paired with white pepper and cumin seeds. And it has a mild aroma with a lemony, earthy, and slightly sweet flavor.
Its flavor elements literally complement the green chilies and herbs used, such as lemongrass and coriander root. The gentle taste elements of coriander seeds counterbalance the strength of this paste and bring it to the point that it does not overpower any recipe when added.
Herbs Used In Thai Green Curry Paste
01- Coriander Root (Cilantro Root)
Although Western cuisine is mostly familiar with coriander seeds and their leaves (cilantro), Thai cuisine incorporates coriander root in most dishes.
In fact, many of their curry pastes come together with this herb. So it mechanically becomes an integral part of this paste too. The coriander root is highly aromatic and pungent with a peppery hint and earthy and citrusy undertones.
Therefore, it certainly gives a great flavor to the green curry paste. This herb combines with other ingredients like lemongrass and spices to become an excellent addition to many stews, noodle dishes, soups, etc.
Uniquely fragranced lemongrass is another Thai cuisine staple. This herb puts in a depth of flavor to the paste with its tart and minty taste notes.
The white part of lemongrass is often combined with coriander root and pulsed together. It pairs well with green chilies, galangal, and dry spices in the mix, offering a perfect taste to many curries or stews made using coconut milk.
Do you know what to use if you run out of Thai green curry paste? Refer to this article right now, and we will enlighten you with the ten best green curry paste alternatives, including options you never expected! Try now!
Other Thai Green Curry Paste Ingredients
In addition to the spices and herbs mentioned above, this paste may also include ingredients like:
- Coriander leaves (Cilantro)
- Thai basil leaves
- Shrimp paste
- Kaffir lemon peel
- Traces of fish
Does Thai Kitchen Green Curry Paste Have MSG?
“Thai Kitchen” is a reputed brand known for its curry paste products. And, when we checked with the ingredient list on their “Thai Kitchen Green Curry Paste,” we DID NOT find any MSG mentioned.
However, many homemade recipes also do not include MSG. But we suggest you always check the ingredients list if you are concerned.
Thai food ain’t about simplicity. It’s about the juggling of disparate elements to create a harmonious finish. Like a complex musical chord, it’s got to have a smooth surface, but it doesn’t matter what’s happening underneath. Simplicity isn’t the dictum here at all. Some westerners think it’s a jumble of flavors, but to a Thai, that’s important. It’s the complexity they delight in.Anonymous
Is Thai Green Curry Paste Vegan Friendly?
The traditional Thai green curry paste consists of shrimp paste which is an ingredient that is not suitable for people who follow a vegan diet. However, you can buy green curry pastes that are one hundred percent vegan friendly under reputed brands.
In addition, you can also make this mix at home without shrimp paste or any fish traces, and it would still be a perfect addition to your dishes!
Is Thai Green Curry Paste Gluten-Free?
When we checked with many pre-packaged green curry paste and homemade recipes, none of them included any gluten-related ingredients. However, the best thing is to refer to the list of ingredients before buying for further assurance.
Wrapping Up With The Flavorful Thai Green Curry Paste…
The taste of “curry” can be a little alien to Western cuisine, but Asians literally exist with it. Consequently, Thai dishes also have a special place for most of their curry pastes.
As you see, the Thai green curry paste ingredients are bursting with flavors. It could give you a super zestful, herbaceous, and turn-on taste twist to any recipe it calls for.
So, Pai laew na ka!- until we come with another informative article.