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The Hirshon Thai Seafood Sour Orange Curry – แกงส้ม

  • Total Time: 0 hours


Units Scale
  • For the curry paste:
  • 1 dried Anaheim pepper
  • 4 dried Chiles de arbol
  • 2 orange Thai chili peppers, minced – if unavailable, try 1 orange habanero instead
  • 1” piece peeled fresh turmeric, sliced (cut and peel on a paper plate, dispose of plate immediately after cutting and wash knife and your hands thoroughly after cutting – fresh turmeric stains permanently!)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon shrimp paste
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese keys (Optional) – (aka gra-chai) scraped and grated (optional but recommended)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup skinless, boneless meat of poached trout or catfish (optional but recommended)
  • 2 1/2 cups of fish stock
  • 1/4 cup prepared tamarind pulp
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 tsp. palm sugar (preferred) or if unavailable use light brown sugar
  • For the curry
  • 1 lb. Shrimp or boneless and skinless white fish fillet
  • 1/4 cup decoratively sliced daikon radish
  • 1/4 cup sliced green beans
  • 1/4 cup peeled green papaya, cubed


  1. Cut up the dried chili peppers and soak in warm water for at least 20 minutes or until soft.
  2. When the peppers are soft, squeeze out the water and place them in a food processor.
  3. Add salt, which helps with the grinding.
  4. Grind the peppers until the paste becomes smooth.
  5. Add Chinese Keys (if using) and turmeric. Grind until mixed in.
  6. Add garlic, Thai chilis and shallots. Grind until smooth. Add shrimp paste and grind to mix it in.
  7. Add the fish meat and grind until you have a smooth paste.
  8. Put the fish stock in a pot and bring it to a gentle boil.
  9. Stir in the prepared paste, followed by tamarind pulp, fish sauce, and palm sugar.
  10. Once the palm sugar completely dissolves, taste and correct the seasoning as necessary. The flavor should be predominantly sour, then salty, and a little sweet.
  11. Your kaeng som curry base is now ready to be used right away or frozen.
  12. Bring 2 cups of the curry base to a boil in a medium pot, add vegetables. Once the vegetables are almost ready, add cubes of fish fillets or peeled and deveined shrimp and gently cook until the fish or shrimp is done.
  13. Serve immediately with plenty of white rice!
  • Prep Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 0 hours
  • Category: Recipes


  • Calories: 226.19 kcal
  • Sugar: 13.82 g
  • Sodium: 1018.19 mg
  • Fat: 4.09 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.18 g
  • Trans Fat: 0.01 g
  • Carbohydrates: 19.13 g
  • Fiber: 2.88 g
  • Protein: 30.05 g
  • Cholesterol: 66.76 mg