Stir-Fried Thai Red Curry Paste with Beef Recipe (Phat Phet Neua)

This dish is made special by the addition of green peppercorns which give the dish a lovely peppery flavor. It is also a good way of using red curry paste for something other than a regular Thai curry. Slices of tender beef are stir-fried with packaged or homemade curry paste, two types of eggplant, young green peppercorns, grachai, kaffir lime leaves, mild sweet red chili pepper and Thai sweet basil and topped with coconut cream.


  • 300g (11/2 cups, 10oz) lean beef, thinly sliced (good quality)
  • 60mls (4 tablespoons) cooking oil
  • 100g (4 tablespoons) packaged red curry paste or homemade
  • 250mls (1 cup, 8 fl oz) thick coconut milk, reserve 30mls (2 tablespoons) for garnish
  • 3 big eggplants, cut in 4 quarters and then sliced
  • 120g (1 1/4 cup, 4 oz) small Thai eggplants
  • 20g (1/4 cup, 1 oz) young, green peppercorns (for jarred peppercorns in brine, rinse and drain before adding)
  • 50g (1 cup, 2 oz) lesser ginger (grachai), cut into strips (for jarred grachai in brine, rinse and drain before adding)
  • 6 kaffir lime leaves, stems removed
  • 1 big, red chili, sliced
  • 30g (1 cup, 1 oz) sweet Thai basil leaves
  • Enough cooking oil to deep-fry the sweet Thai basil
  • 30mls (2 tablespoons) Thai fish sauce
  • 15mls (1 tablespoon) Thai soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 60mls (4 tablespoons) chicken stock or water


  1. Put the oil into a wok and when it is hot add the red curry paste and fry for 1-2 minutes. Then add half the thick coconut milk and the beef and stir-fry until the outside of the beef looks cooked (about 2 minutes). Then add the big eggplants, small eggplants and young, green peppercorns and stir-fry to combine. Add the lesser ginger and kaffir lime leaves and stir-fry again.
  2. Then add the sauce ingredients and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the remaining thick coconut milk and the big, red chili and stir-fry to combine. Turn off the heat and transfer to a serving dish.
  3. Deep fry the sweet basil leaves in very hot oil for 1 minute and drain. Then put them on top of the beef. Pour the remaining thick coconut milk over the top and serve.

Serves 4.

Passion for Thai Cooking Cookbook

Passion for Thai Cooking - Chiang Mai Cookery School

This recipe comes from the beautifully photographed Passion for Thai Cooking cookbook.

This title is available to buy in our Thai cookbook store.

Recipe and image © 2000 Sompon and Elizabeth Nabnian, Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School; Image © Pakpong Pongatichat/

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