A mild Thai curry that comes from South Thailand and carries a strong Muslim/Indian influence. In fact the name is a derivation of Mussulman which means Moslem person. This curry is very reminiscent of Indian and Malay Kormas, thick and creamy with just a hint of heat.
Massaman curry is very simple as long as you’ve got the paste. A good paste is essential, good shop bought ones are around if you look for them. For those of you in the UK, Waitrose stock a line called Thai Taste that’s pretty good. All the pastes are made in Thailand. Click here for homemade, if you’d like to try your hand at making it.
In Thailand, this curry is often made with beef or lamb, and is quite often called “training curry” as its mildness makes it the perfect way to introduce children to spice without the heat. You can use any meat you like, it’s a matter of personal preference, I make a vegetarian version and it’s gorgeous! Think aubergines, courgettes, capsicum, beans and potatoes.
A quick word about the meat used. On the bone is always best as the bones create a depth of flavour that will be missed otherwise. Do not use stock, you will alter the nature of the curry. If using chicken, I like to mix it up by using thighs and breasts or legs and breasts. Even better would be to use a whole chopped chicken (easily done by your butcher). Chicken will only take about an hour while beef and lamb can take 2-3 hours depending on the part used. Use cuts that you would use for a stew.
Don’t overcook the potatoes.
When cooking with coconut milk, NEVER cover the saucepan and always simmer once it’s come to the boil. This is to stop the milk from curdling, even with the added stabilizers, that can happen.
Vegetarian option at the end.