Cook's Hideout: Panaeng Curry with Tofu & Peppers

July 30, 2012

Panaeng Curry with Tofu & Peppers

Panaeng Curry is one of my favorite Thai curries because it's creamy, mild and not as spicy as other Thai curries. Panaeng curry paste has peanuts and the usual Thai ingredients like lemon grass, galangal, garlic, coriander seeds etc. 

This curry usually is drier than most Thai curries. Its dryness is acieved by reduction, which, at the end, leaves the curry with an intense taste. 

I usually double the ingredients for the curry paste and freeze half of it in freezer safe container or in a ziploc bag for later use. Recipe from Buddha's Table
For the Panaeng Curry Paste:
Dried Red Chilies - 6 - 8, large (New Mexico, California or any Indian chili should work)
Coriander seeds - 1tbsp
Cumin seeds - 2tsp
Roaste d Peanuts - 3tbsp
Lemongrass - 2tbsp chopped, tender midsection only
Shallots - 2tbsp, chopped
Garlic - 2tbsp, chopped
Red Thai chilies - 1tbsp, chopped (optional, for more heat)
Galangal - 1tbsp (I bought canned galangal from Whole Foods, you can substitute with regular ginger)
Kaffir lime leaves or skin - 1tbsp (substitute with grated lime zest)
Fresh Cilantro roots or stems - 1tbsp, chopped
Salt - 1tsp

For the Curry:
Panaeng Curry Paste -1/3cup
Extra firm or Firm Tofu - 2 cups, diced into ¼" pieces
Coconut milk - 2cups
Light soy sauce - ¼cup
Brown Sugar - 3tbsp
Onion - 1 large, thinly sliced
Red Bell Pepper - 1 medium, thinly sliced (I used one small green & red bell pepper)
Roasted peanuts - 3tbsp, finely chopped
Coconut cream - 1cup (I did not use this)
Thai basil - for garnish (I used regular basil)
Salt - to taste

  • Make the Curry Paste: Stem and seed the dried red chilies. Soak them in warm water for 10-15 minutes or until soft. Drain and squeeze dry.
  • Dry roast the coriander and cumin seeds until fragrant, about 3-5 minutes.
  • Grind all the ingredients into a smooth paste using small amount of water to facilitate blending. Use immediately or freeze for later use.
  • For the Curry: Heat 2tbsp oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and peppers. Cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add the curry paste and cook 2-3 minutes or until fragrant.
  • Add the tofu and stir until well coated with the curry paste.
  • Stir in the coconut milk, soy sauce and brown sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer 15-20 minutes or until somewhat thickened and the veggies are cooked through.
  • Stir in the coconut cream (if using) and remove from heat.
  • Garnish with basil leaves and serve with steamed rice.

Sending this delicious Thai dish over to this month's Dish It Out -- Tofu & Peppers event being hosted by Usha.



  1. wow delicious curry,love the presentation...sure will try it:)

  2. Curry looks creamy and delicious! Thanks for linking it to Dish it Out

  3. It looks so so tempting, I am making it this weekend :D
    Conference Centre Manchester

  4. Panag curry is my favorite! Must try.


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