Water Lily Curry with Shrimp

(Photo by rockYOface/Flickr)
(Photo by rockYOface/Flickr)

Serves 4.


3 or 4 water lily stems
500 g/1 lb small raw shrimp
400 ml/14 fl oz can coconut milk
2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 teaspoons palm or brown sugar
3 kaffir lime leaves
few fresh basil leaves


Peel the water lily stems and cut in thick diagonal slices. Wash the shrimp and remove only the hard shell on the head. In a wok heat 1/2 cup coconut milk and when bubbling add the curry paste, stirring, and cook for a few minutes until fragrant. Add shrimp and turn them in the spicy mixture until coated, then gradually stir in the rest of the coconut milk. Stir until it reaches simmering point, then add the fish sauce, sugar, lime leaves and the water lily stems. Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and serve scattered with basil leaves and accompanied by steamed rice.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)