Yellow Curry Shrimp, with Tamarind and Green Papaya

Kaeng Leuang Goong


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes

    4 to 6

    servings as part of a multi-dish meal

Appears in

Southeast Asian Flavors: Adventures in Cooking the Foods of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia & Singapore

Southeast Asian Flavors

By Robert Danhi

Published 2008

  • About

Seafood curry is most common in southern Thailand due to the extensive coastline. Catfish, mackerel or small sardines also work beautifully in place of shrimp in this recipe. Mild green papaya slices simmer in the golden gravy, soaking up all the curry’s intense flavors.


  • 1 can (about 14 oz.) Coconut milk, stirred well (divided use)
  • ¼ cup Yellow curry paste (add 1 more tablespoon if paste was made in blender) or store-bought
  • cups Water or light stock
  • 1 Tbsp. Fish sauce (nahm pla)
  • 2 tsp. Light brown palm sugar
  • 1 cup Green papaya, peeled and seeded, bite size slices, about ¼ inch (0.6 cm.) thick
  • 1 lb. (454 g.) Shrimp, any size, peeled and deveined
  • 2 Tbsp. Tamarind pulp
  • 1 medium Long red chilies, sliced into thin rings


  1. Heat 1 cup coconut milk in a wok or saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often until it thickens substantially and oil begins to separate out of creamy milk, about 5 minutes. Stir in curry paste; cook, stirring constantly for 2 minutes to develop the spices’ flavors.
  2. Add water, sugar, papaya, and fish sauce; simmer until papaya is almost cooked they will become translucent, but still very firm, about 3 minutes. Add shrimp; simmer, stirring often until shrimp opaque. Stir in remaining coconut milk and tamarind; bring back to a simmer.
  3. Taste; adjust seasoning with additional palm sugar, fish sauce and/or salt. Transfer to serving dish and garnish with chili rings.