Green curry paste

Green curry paste

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(7 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 5 mins

More effort

Makes 750g/1lb 10oz
John Torode shares his secret to making a fragrant Thai curry - use this strong and aromatic homemade paste as a base

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving (30g)

  • kcal18
  • fat1g
  • saturates0g
  • carbs2g
  • sugars1g
  • fibre0g
  • protein2g
  • salt1.2g


  • 50g coriander seed
    Coriander seed

    Coriander seed

    kor-ee-and-er seed

    The small, creamy brown seeds of the coriander plant give dishes a warm, aromatic and slightly…

  • 25g cumin seed
  • 1 whole blade mace
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg



    One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

  • 9 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 9 shallots, chopped



    Related to the onion (as opposed to being a younger version of it), shallots grow in clusters at…

  • about 15 coriander roots, chopped, plus a handful of coriander leaves
  • 19 green chillies, deseeded and chopped
  • 250g galangal, chopped
  • 5 lemongrass stalks, outer leaves removed, inner stalk chopped
  • 5 lime leaves, stalks removed and leaves chopped
    Lime leaf

    Lime leaf

    ly-m leef

    Lime leaves are obtained from the kaffir lime, which is not a true lime at all but rather a…

  • 100g shrimp paste
  • handful basil leaves


  1. Heat a dry frying pan and add the coriander and cumin seeds, mace and nutmeg. Roast until they begin to colour and release their aromas. Remove from the heat, then grind to a powder in a spice mill or blender.

  2. Put the garlic in a blender or pound using a pestle and mortar, then add the shallots, coriander roots, chillies, galangal, lemongrass and 2 tsp salt. Finally, add the lime leaves, shrimp paste, basil and the ground spices, then whizz or pound until you have a smooth paste.

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Comments, questions and tips

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3rd Jul, 2016
Moorish , I made this with fried red onion and fried spring onions ( 2 red onions to 2 spring onions ratio ) to substitute the shallots ( non available) . I used it with another T.G.Chkn recipe on this site. Cooked fresh and from frozen no difference . Remember even Michelins get punctures sometimes. Printed & laminated till I know it from heart
20th Nov, 2014
John Torode really knows his Thai ? I don't think so. His tip in freezing the paste is so wrong. You never freeze a Thai paste. I'm Thai born and have worked in some pretty good Thai kitchens and it's simply not done. But don't just take my word for it, the acknowledged master of Thai food is David Thompson, chef at Nahm in Bangkok, voted best Thai restarant in Asia as well as formerly running the Michelin rated Nahm in London. "Don't freeze a Thai curry paste as when thawed the shallots and garlic will become bitter and the paste insipid as it weeps" Thai Food by David Thompson. As for other comments, by my calculations the galangal makes up half the recipe and you left it out ? For any others attempting this recipe note that it should be kaffir lime leaves not simply lime leaves, very different.
Miffy and Di
19th Oct, 2014
Torode is a class act and know his Thai - This really is the top Thai paste recipe and dead on even with missing ingredients! Left out the Galangal and Mace as we didn't have them and replaced lime leaves with zest of 2 limes and the juice from them. If no shrimp paste available use Thai fish sauce - about 2 tablespoons for this mix. We also left out the basil and all good. This recipe has much more depth than some of the paste recipes on the net. Definitely one to remember.
28th Oct, 2013
So green curry paste has no curry in it?
8th Nov, 2014
Plus chillies - what were you expecting, curry powder??!
7th Nov, 2013
cumin and coriander are 2 main curry ingredients - so yes - it has :-)
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