Thai Curry : Chicken Massaman Curry

Thai Curry : Chicken Massaman Curry

 Chicken Massaman Curry

Thai curry

Thai Curry : Chicken Mussamun Curry

Serves : 6
Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 45 mins


  • 1 liter thin coconut milk and 125ml thick coconut milk
  • 1 fresh chicken (about 1kg), cut into 12 pieces
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (each 8cm)
  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 300g pearls onions or 3 medium onions, chopped
  • 50g unsalted raw peanuts
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dark-brown sugar or shaved palm-sugar 
  • 6 tablespoons tamarind juice

Mussamun Curry Paste

Thai curry

  • 3 dried red chilies, stems discarded, de seeded, soaked in warm water for 15 minutes until soft. 
  • ¾ tablespoon coriander seeds
  • ¾ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick (3cm) or ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 3 shallots
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 stalk lemongrass, outer layers discarded, inner part sliced, thick bottom part only. 
  • 1cm galangal root, peeled and sliced
  • ½ tablespoon crushed coriander roots and stems
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves
  • ¾ teaspoon dried shrimp paste
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons water

Method for Cooking Chicken Mussamun Curry:

  1. To prepare tamarind juice, mix 1 tablespoon of dried-tamarind pulp with 2 tablespoons of little hot water to make it soften, then mash well and strain to remove the seeds and fibers.

  2. To prepare the Massaman Curry Paste, fry the dried red chilies, cloves, cardamom, nutmug, black peppercorns, coriander seeds, cumin and cinnamon  in a wok or skillet over medium heat for about 5 minutes until fragrant. Mix the roasted ingredients and all the other ingredients and make to a smooth paste in a blender.

  3. Heat 60ml of the thin coconut milk in a wok over medium heat until hot. Stir in the Massaman Curry Paste and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until fragrant.

  4. After 2 to 3 min, put the chicken in Massaman curry paste and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the remaining thin coconut-milk, bay leaves, cinnamon and cardamom , mix well and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes until the chicken is tender and cooked.

  5. Now increase the heat from low to medium, add the onions, peanuts, fish sauce,potatoes, palm sugar and and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are cooked. Stir in the thick coconut-milk & adjust for seasoning, adding more fish-sauce, sugar and tamarind juice if desired. Simmer for another 6 to 8 minutes and remove from the heat.

  6. Put massaman curry into a serving bowl and serve hot with steamed rice.

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