Recipe: Thai-style duck red curry

Rating: 4.9 stars based on 443 reviews


    For the spice paste

    • 5 black peppercorns
    • 1 tsp cumin seeds
    • 1 tsp coriander seeds
    • 5 red chillies, seeds removed, chopped
    • 2 shallots, chopped
    • 1 tbsp crushed garlic
    • 2.5cm/1in piece fresh ginger root, peeled and chopped
    • 3 lemongrass stalks, chopped
    • 6 kaffir lime leaves
    • pinch ground cinnamon
    • pinch turmeric
    • splash Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
    • splash chilli oil
    • 1 tbsp palm sugar (substitute brown sugar if unavailable)

    For the duck

    • 2 duck legs
    • 250ml/8fl oz chicken stock
    • 400ml/14fl oz can of coconut milk
    • salt and freshly ground pepper
    • 8 spring onions, finely sliced
    • 1 red pepper, seeds removed, sliced
    • 250g pineapple chunks
    • 300 g (10.6oz) bamboo shoots, sliced lengthways
    • 16 baby aubergines, halved and griddled (griddling optional)

    To serve

    • Thai sticky rice, cooked according to packet instructions
    • fresh coriander leaves, chopped
    • 1 lime, cut into wedges


      For the spice paste

      • Dry-fry the peppercorns, cumin seeds and coriander seeds in a frying pan without any oil for 4-5 minutes, to release the flavours. Transfer the spices to a pestle and mortar and grind.
      • Place the ground spices into a food processor and add the chilli, shallots, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, lime leaves, cinnamon, turmeric, fish sauce, chilli oil and palm sugar and blend to a smooth paste.

      For the duck

      • Roast the legs in the oven at Gas Mark 6 for an hour. Allow to cool and strip the meat from the legs put aside.


      • Place a good tablespoonful of paste into the same pan and cook over a low heat until fragrant.
      • Add the stock and coconut milk and bring to the boil.
      • Thinly slice the duck meat and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add the duck slices to the pan and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
      • Add the spring onions, red pepper, bamboo shoots, pineapple and aubergines and cook for five minutes, or until the aubergines are soft and the duck is completely cooked through.

      To serve

      • Place a mound of rice onto each of four plates. Spoon equal portions of the duck curry over and garnish with chopped coriander and lime wedges.


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