I highly recommend this Thai cookbook. The recipes turn out just as good as what you would expect to order in a restaraunt. Of course you have a lot more dishes to choose from since you don't have to worry about egg and fish sauce that is so prevalent in authentic Thai cooking. One of the recipes I use the most out of this book is the basic curry recipe posted below. This is what the author has to say about it:
The books also contains recipes for more authentic curry pastes with ingredients that you may need to get at an Asian grocery store. One popular ingredient in Thai cooking is lemon grass. I think I will try to grow some this year, and post the results here.
> 1 cup coarsely chopped cilatro leaves and stems
> 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
> 1/3 cup peeled and coarsely chopped fresh ginger
> 1/4 cup chopped garlic (15 to 20 cloves)
> 1 Tbsp grated lime zest
> 1 Tbsp ground coriander
> 1 tsp ground cumin
> 1 tsp freshly ground pepper
> 1 tsp salt
Stem the chilies and discard some of the seeds. Chop the fresh chilies coarsely. Soak the dried chilies in water to cover for about 10 minutes.
Drain the dried chilies, if using. Combine all of the ingredients in a blender or mini processor and grind to a fine, fairly smooth puree, stopping often to scrape down the sides and adding a few tablespoons of water as needed to move the blades. Transfer to a jar, seal airtight, and keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Makes about 1 cup.
1. I have always used fresh serrano chilies and it has turned out well.
2. Most of the heat in the chilies are in the seeds, so use more seeds if you want it hot and less if you want it milder. What I like to do is make it mild but set aside a small amount in a dish. Then I blend all of the chilie seeds into the small amount and let people add that to their serving of curry if they want to spice it up.
3. You can also use red chilie paste to increase the heat, it is available in a squeeze bottle in the Asian section of most grocery stores.
I will be posting some Thai recipes in the weeks to come, some of which can be made with this curry paste.