Massaman curry paste may look similar to Thai red curry paste, but the flavor of this version reveals a distinctive Indian influence. We use aromatic spices like cardamom, cumin, nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon to wake up the palette just before the savory and tangy flavors (like kaffir lime rind) roll over your tongue. Dried Thai chilies bring up the finish line with spice, panache and vivid red color. Massaman is a full-bodied paste that everyone should try at least once. And if you’re going to have this curry paste only once, it should absolutely be from your own kitchen, because the jar you pull off of a grocery store shelf is worlds away from this freshly made flavor enhancer. You can use this curry paste as the base for meat sauces, rice or pasta garnishes, or as a dip for your favorite appetizer.
Mix all the dry spices and grind in a spice grinder.
Now, mix all the ingredients but the shrimp paste, preferably in a mortar and pestle, until the chili pieces are no longer visible.
Once you’ve mixed all the other ingredients, add the shrimp paste.