This is a golden-hued Thai chicken curry simmered with individual spices, fresh herbs, and a hint of cinnamon. A swirl of coconut milk is added at the end which adds a rich, creamy texture for the ultimate Thai taste. Whole chicken pieces, such as drumsticks, lend very tender results, and chunky wedges of potato round out the dish. In Thailand, yellow curries are made with yellow chilies, but red can also be substituted For those whose taste tends towards milder foods, this curry is also delicious made without chili -- the version without chilies is great for kids and those with sensitive palates. Serve with Thai jasmine-scented rice on the side, and dinner is ready.
- 8 skinless chicken thighs, or 6 to 8 drumsticks
- 1/3 can full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup chopped onion (purple or white)
- 1 thumb-sized piece fresh galangal or ginger, grated or finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 yellow chili, minced, OR 1 red chili, minced (to taste -- omit for very mild curry)
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce
- 2 teaspoons whole cumin seed
- 3/4 teaspoon turmeric
- 3 teaspoons ground coriander
- 2 kaffir lime leaves or 3 to 4 bay leaves
- 2 medium potatoes, chopped into chunks
- 1 cinnamon stick or pinch of ground cinnamon (optional)
Warm a medium-size pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl around to coat the bottom, then add onion, galangal or ginger, garlic, and chili. Stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes to release the fragrance.
Add the white wine. Simmer over medium-high heat 5 minutes to burn off alcohol. Then add the chicken stock, fish sauce, cumin seed, turmeric, coriander, and lime leaves or bay leaves. Stir well.
Add chicken pieces. When the curry returns to boiling, reduce heat to medium, or until you get a nice simmer. Simmer 10 minutes.
Add potatoes and cover 3/4 with a lid. Continue simmering another 20 minutes, or until chicken is tender and coming away from the bone and potatoes are cooked.
Reduce heat to low. Add 1/3 can coconut milk and cinnamon stick (if using) and give the curry a gentle stir. Taste-test for spice and depth of flavor. If not flavorful or salty enough, add more fish sauce, 1 teaspoon at a time, until the desired flavor is reached. If too spicy or salty, add more coconut milk.
Serve with the fresh coriander sprinkled over and Thai jasmine-scented rice on the side.