A simple yet flavorful chicken curry is what you need for a cozy family dinner this holiday season and this Thai coconut chicken curry is the perfect one to fit the bill with the right amount of warmth for this chilly season!
Thai chicken curries are loved by all and there is a reason to it! Take any Thai chicken curry for example and you will find hundreds of fans for each! Thai green chicken curry is my favorite and Thai red chicken curry is my husband’s pick!
Thai yellow chicken curry is one of the most popular recipes of my blog, so I can safely assume that people love it a lot! Today I have another variation of Thai chicken curry which is much simpler than the above mentioned ones but equally flavorful if not more!
I have Thai coconut chicken curry to offer you guys today which has its appeal in the vibrant yellow color. The sunny look of Thai coconut chicken curry will make you hungry almost instantly and best part is that it is significantly easier to cook than the other variations!
If you don’t have any Thai curry paste handy at home, you won’t need to drop the idea of making a Thai chicken curry. You will be able to make this Thai coconut chicken curry which does not demand any Thai curry paste but still turns out amazingly flavorful which is the USP of any Thai recipe!
Thai recipes are known for fresh flavors and this Thai coconut chicken curry is no exception. You can add loads of fresh vegetables of your choice; for example I added green bell pepper and onion. You have the option of zucchini, baby corn, bamboo shoots, julienned carrots and many more.
To build the mind-blowing flavor of a typical Thai recipe in this Thai coconut chicken curry, you will need few typical Thai ingredients like coconut milk, Kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, brown sugar and rice vinegar. If you are fond of Thai food like I am, I suggest you keep these items handy at all time.
You may be wondering how this Thai coconut chicken curry is different from a red or green Thai curry as those also have coconut milk in it. I agree. But in those recipes, flavor comes packed in the curry paste which has numerous other ingredients in it and hence much complex in nature.
On the other hand, this Thai coconut chicken curry has much simpler flavors contributed by lime leaves, fresh Thai basil etc and majorly dominated by thick coconut milk. Make sure to use the thick coconut milk or coconut cream which will give you the best taste.
To make this or any other Thai chicken curry, ideal choice is boneless chicken cubes which can be from either chicken breasts or chicken thighs. I always use chicken thighs or sometimes small bone-in chicken pieces which we typically use in any Indian chicken curries; but tend to avoid chicken breasts.
This same recipe can be replicated to make a meatless Thai coconut curry with loads of veggies of your choice. Winter is the perfect season to make this vegetarian version as fresh produce is at its best during this time. Trust me, whichever you make, you will fall for this Thai coconut curry almost instantaneously! Enjoy!
- Chicken thighs – 500 gms, skinless & boneless
- Green bell pepper – 1, medium
- Onion – 1, medium
- Vegetable/canola oil – 4 tbsp
- Garlic – 10 to 12 small cloves, grated (about 2 tsp grated garlic)
- Thick coconut milk – 400 ml
- Fresh Thai basil leaves – 1 cup, packed
- Kaffir lime leaves – 4 to 5 (I used dry as fresh is not easily available here)
- Light soy sauce – 1 tsp
- Fish sauce – 2 tbsp
- White vinegar – 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder- ½ tsp
- Sugar – 1 tsp
- Salt to taste
- Freshly chopped cilantro to garnish
- Cut the chicken thighs into small bite-sized cubes of about 1-inch long. Wash and drain the water out. Set aside.
- Cut the bell pepper into thin long strips; chop the onion into thin slices. You can add more vegetables of your choice and cut them into as much equal size as possible.
- Heat a skillet with high sides and add the oil to it. Once the oil is hot, add 1 teaspoon of grated garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.
- Then tip in the chopped chicken; sprinkle about half a teaspoon of salt and sauté them on medium-low flame until the chicken pieces are completely cooked through. It would take about 10 to 15 minutes. Once the chicken is completely cooked, take them out using a slotted spoon and set aside on a plate.
- If your skillet seems to be too dry, add little more oil and add in the rest of the grated garlic. Sauté it for 30 seconds.
- Now throw in the onion and bell peppers and fry them on high for 2 minutes. Once they are nicely browned, sprinkle the turmeric powder. Give a good stir for 30 seconds.
- After about half a minute pour the coconut milk and stir it to combine with turmeric powder and the veggies.
- Now it’s time to add all the taste builders – add kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, vinegar, soy sauce and sugar. Stir them in with a spatula to mix everything evenly with the coconut milk.
- Do a taste test at this point and add salt only if it is required. Since fish sauce is already very salty, you may not require to add any additional salt.
- Now add all the cooked chicken along with the juice which must have accumulated on the plate; don’t discard that juice as it holds all the chicken flavor.
- Give a good mix and check the consistency of the gravy. If it seems to be too thick, add half a cup of water and bring the gravy to boil.
- Once the gravy starts simmering, add all the fresh Thai basil leaves to the skillet, cover it and let them cook down for about 5 minutes on low heat. Fresh Thai basil leaves add maximum flavor to this Thai coconut chicken curry recipe.
- After about 2 to 3 minutes, uncover the skillet and give a final good stir. Your Thai coconut chicken curry is ready!
- Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve with plain white rice! Enjoy!