Sunday, July 27, 2014

Baked fish with red Thai curry paste

Remember the green Thai curry paste I made from scratch to make homemade coconut curry? Well, I also made a batch of red curry paste and froze it in small batches.

It turns out that curry paste can be used to make an AMAZING marinade for fish.

All I did was add a splash each of fish sauce, soy sauce, and lime juice to ~1 to 1.5 TBSP of the curry paste until it had the consistency of a thick, spreadable marinade. I spooned that mixture over fish (barramundi is pictured here but we also used swordfish on another night), baked until fork tender, and served it alongside a simple vinegar slaw.

We were lucky enough to also have on hand some potted herbs (gifted to us from the boy's dad), so thinly sliced mint and basil completed this fresh and light summertime meal.

The best part of this meal (other than the amazing flavor) is that in less than 30 minutes we had a fresh, homemade, and healthy dinner for 2!
Yours in experimenting with unique ways to use her homemade curry paste,

Baked fish with red Thai curry paste

I didn't measure the exact amounts, so I'd estimate 1 to 2 TBSP of soy sauce, maybe 1 TBSP of fish sauce, and juice of 1/2 a lime. Just a guess though, so add enough of each to make the marinade "spoonable" and adjust to your particular taste buds.

As far as the fish goes, we've used barramundi and swordfish for this recipe and both stand up perfectly to the spicy curry. I can imagine this would work well with a variety of fish--whatever your favorite may be!


Fish fillets, 2 to 4 (see note above)
1 to 1.5 TBSP red Thai curry paste (see recipe below)
soy sauce
fish sauce
lime juice 
fresh herbs (mint, basil, cilantro, etc)

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Mix curry paste, soy sauce, fish sauce, and lime juice in small bowl until watered down but still a little thick. 
  3. Spoon the marinade over the fish, making sure to cover the entire top. (Keep in mind, the thicker the layer of curry marinade, the more potent and spicy the dish. I like it with a hefty layer of marinade, but use a lesser amount if you want a milder flavor.)
  4. Bake fish for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until the filet is cooked through.
  5. Top with fresh herbs. Serve immediately with a wedge of lime. 
Thai red curry paste, adapted from Adventures in Cooking

This is enough to make about 2 to 3 TBSP of curry paste. Double or triple the recipe and freeze the leftover in small portions so you have it on hand for a quick and easy dinner.

2-3 dried red chile peppers, soaked in water for at least 30 minutes with seeds removed (I didn't have this so I substituted 2-3 fresh Thai chile peppers instead. It's less red than a typical red curry paste, but it still tastes great.)
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ginger root, finely chopped
2 teaspoons galangal root, finely chopped
2 tablespoons lemongrass, finely chopped
2 tablespoons shallots, finely chopped


Crush ingredients together with a rough stone mortar and pestle until a smooth paste forms. Alternatively, blend all the ingredients together in a food processor (using a bit of coconut oil if you like if the mixture is too dry).


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