Massaman Curry Recipe from Jam Sanitchat of Thai Fresh Austin

Massaman is an Indian-inspired curry that typically calls for more dried spices than other Thai curries. It’s usually made in a big batch to share family style, allowing the flavors to marry in the time it takes to make from scratch (Scratch recipe below if you’re feeling adventurous!) This recipe works great cooked with stew beef or bone-in chicken thighs or your favorite protein.


1 can massaman curry paste (maesri brand)

2 cans (13.5 oz can) of coconut milk

1 1/2 lb chicken, beef, pork or 4 cups fried tofu

1-2 medium size potatoes or sweet potatoes, cut into 1 ½ inch cubes

1 onion, chopped to about 1 ½ inch pieces

4 tablespoon fish sauce

¼ cup tamarind water

2 teaspoon of sugar

❶ Begin with coconut milk (do not shake cans), scoop the top half of both cans into a pot and bring to a boil. Add the paste and stir well. Lower the heat and let the paste simmer for 5 minutes without stirring.

❷ When the paste is oily and you can smell the spices cooking, add your choice of meat and cook until half-way done, stirring once or twice. If using stew beef, simmer raw beef with the sauce for 45 minutes before adding additional vegetables such as potatoes or onions. If using bone-in chicken thighs, simmer for 30 minutes before adding potatoes and onions.

❸ Add the rest of the coconut milk. Depending on the cut of beef, it may take longer. Simmer another 10 minutes after adding potatoes and onions. Season with fish sauce, sugar and tamarind water. Check seasoning to taste.

Feeling adventurous enough to try your hand at scratch-made Massaman Curry Paste? Muddle these finely-chopped ingredients together to make your own!


15 dried long red chilies, deseeded, soaked and drained

4 tbsp chopped red shallot, roasted

5 tbsp chopped garlic, roasted

2 tbsp chopped galangal, roasted

3 tbsp chopped lemongrass, roasted

1 tbsp scraped and chopped coriander root

large pinch of salt

1 tbsp coriander seeds, roasted and ground

1 tsp cumin seeds, roasted and ground

5 cloves, roasted and ground

4 Thai cardamom pods, roasted and ground (white cardamom is a good substitution)

In addition to owning iconic south Austin restaurant Thai Fresh, Jam is working on launching a cookbook of her beloved recipes. Find out how you can support her HERE.  

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Posted in Main Dishes, Uncategorized

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