3 small hot green chillies, finely chopped (include the seeds)
1 larger, mild-to-medium green chilli, finely chopped (include the seeds)
small handful basil leaves
½ tsp each ground cumin and coriander
¼ tsp black pepper
1 tsp crumbled freeze-dried kaffir lime leaves
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp sunflower oil
1 tbsp sunflower oil
400ml/14fl oz can reduced-fat coconut milk
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (450g/1lb total weight), cut into bite-size pieces
2 tsp fish sauce
½ tsp granulated palm or light muscovado sugar
4 freeze-dried lime leaves
100g mange tout, thinly sliced lengthways
100g green beans, halved lengthways
2 spring onions, finely shredded
250g Thai fragrant rice, cooked
For the curry paste, finely chop the coriander stalks and put them into a mini food blender or small food processor with the shallots, lemongrass, garlic and ginger. Pulse until as smooth as you can get it. Add the chillies, basil, threequarters of the coriander leaves, the ground cumin, coriander, pepper, lime leaves and lime juice, then pulse again. Mix in the oil and set aside. You will only be using half of this paste, the rest can be chilled for a couple of days, or frozen for up to a month.
For the curry, heat the oil in a non-stick wok or deep saute pan, stir in half the curry paste, then stir-fry for 1 min. Shake the coconut milk in its can, open, then pour two-thirds into the pan. Let it bubble away for 4-5 mins, stirring now and then, until reduced and thickened slightly.
Tip in the chicken, then stir-fry for 1-2 mins until no longer pink. Stir in the fish sauce and sugar, then pour in the rest of the coconut milk to give a thinnish, creamy sauce. Lower the heat, add the lime leaves, then simmer for 5 mins to gently finish cooking the chicken. Can be frozen at this point for up to 1 month.
While the chicken simmers, steam the mangetout and beans for a couple of mins. Serve the curry in bowls with some of the veg piled on top (serve the rest separately) along with the spring onions and the rest of the coriander leaves. Serve with a bowl of Thai fragrant rice and lime wedges for squeezing over.