Thai food is all about balancing flavours. In the school, we can never agree on how much coconut milk to add as everyone likes it made the same way it is done in their favourite Thai restaurant.
My favourite Thai Restaurant in Dublin is Baan Thai Restaurant, Ballsbridge. It’s very intimate and I even had my 30th Birthday party there.
I fell in love with Thai Food when I travelled through South East Asia. We travelled to Chiang Mai and visited a very famous cookery school in a private house. After that lesson I became an insatiable student of Thai cuisine and here is a recipe that I included in my cookbook which is based on the ingredients and flavours that were taught to me in my first Thai lesson.
Over 10 years this recipe has been a true hit with our students. It’s very simple and the monkfish can be substituted with chicken if you want to go for a more affordable option for a midweek dinner. Even with chicken, it makes a great dinner party dish as it is a real crowd pleaser.
Go sparingly with the curry paste if you don’t know how hot your friends like their curries. For some people, the heat of a good quality curry paste (e.g. Mae Ploy brand that’s sold in most Asia markets), takes a bit of getting used to as it will be more intense than a supermarket brand. It remains a very popular dish with my students and our tutors in Dublin city’s best cookery school (Well I would say that!)
100g baby corn cobs, sliced in half lengthways
1 tbsp red curry paste (good quality)
300mls coconut milk
100ml fish stock
200g button mushrooms
½ yellow pepper, deseeded and sliced into strips
1-2 tbs fish sauce, to taste
1 tbsp lime juice
3 lime leaves, de-veined and torn
400g Monkfish tail, skinned and cut into thick medallions
1 red chilli, sliced diagonally
2 spring onions, cut on the diagonal
1. Put the red curry paste into a wok or large non-stick pan and cook for 2 minutes (if it starts to spit add a splash of the coconut milk). Add the coconut milk and fish stock and bring to a light simmer, before adding the mushrooms and yellow pepper. Simmer for about 5 minutes until the vegetables have softened.
2. Add the fish sauce, lime juice and lime leaves. Taste the sauce at this stage, and adjust the flavours to your taste (add more lime juice if you find the sauce too salty or too fiery hot).
3. Add the monkfish medallions and baby corn. Simmer for a further 6-8 minutes until the monkfish is cooked.
4. Garnish with sliced red chillies and spring onions and serve with rice.
Note: Makrut limes yield little juice, however their leaves are highly aromatic and are used extensively in South East Asian cooking.
For all the details of our next Thai Cookery Workshop, click through the link here.