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Yellow curry paste

Serves: Makes 250ml

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Authentic Thai cuisine

Difficulty: Super Easy

This curry paste is simple and quick to make. All you need is a good pestle and mortar to bash all of the ingredients together. But if you don’t fancy a 45-minute arm workout, you can cheat with a food processor. If you prefer a vegetarian option, simply remove the shrimp paste from the recipe. It still tastes great – trust me.

Tools: Pestle And Mortar, Food processor


5 shallots, unpeeled
10 small garlic cloves, unpeeled
2 tablespoons finely sliced galangal
1 teaspoon finely sliced fresh root ginger
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
3 dried red spur chillies, deseeded and soaked until tender
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons sliced lemongrass
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon shrimp paste (leave out if prefer vegetarian paste)


  1. In a wok or frying pan, dry-fry the whole shallots and garlic, until golden and soft. This will take 5–10 minutes. Set aside to cool, then peel off the skin.
  2. Dry-fry the galangal and ginger for 2-3 minutes over a medium heat until fragrant and slightly golden. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  3. Dry-fry the coriander seeds for about 2 minutes, stirring continuously, until fragrant. Grind or pound until fine.
  4. Finely pound or blend the chillies and salt. Add the roasted galangal and ginger plus the lemongrass and blend or pound well. Add the shallots and garlic and mix again.
  5. Add the ground coriander seeds, cumin, curry powder and shrimp paste and mix until smooth.

This curry paste will keep in the fridge for up to 8 weeks if stored in an airtight container, and up to 6 months in the freezer.

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