{Recipe} Choo Chee Curry Paste – vegan


Choo chee is a Thai curry paste using red chillis. Traditionally, it also contains shrimp paste.

When Mat and I lived in Sydney (many moons ago), our favourite Thai dish was called Gang Choo Chee Tofu.  It contained tofu and kaffir lime leaves in a coconut milk sauce. Simple, yet scrumptious.

After making my own green curry paste recently, I was inspired to attempt choo chee curry paste. The result is a flavoursome paste containing galangal, turmeric, ginger, garlic, black peppercorns, lemongrass, and shallots (scallions). The spice level is ‘kid-friendly’. In other words, my kids eat it.


Choo Chee Curry Paste

(Inspired by this non-vegan recipe.)

Quantity- 3 tablespoons


1 large red chilli

4 small red chillis (bird’s eye chillis)

4 cloves garlic

1 Tbsp chopped lemongrass

1 Tbsp chopped shallots (scallions), white and green sections

1 tsp freshly grated galangal

1/2 Tbsp freshly grated turmeric

1 tsp freshly grated ginger

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp whole black peppercorns


1.Roughly chop the chillis, and add them to a mortar (add the seeds too). Grind with the pestle until the chillis begin to break up. Beware of flying seeds, and be sure to avoid the squirting chilli juice – you don’t want that in your eye!

2. Add the remaining ingredients, and pound with pestle until a paste consistency is achieved (about 15-20 mins).

3. Use the paste immediately to prepare Choo Chee Tofu Curry, or store in a lidded jar in the fridge.

[The observant among you will notice that my large red chilli is missing its tail (in the second photo). Yes, on this occasion, I was chilli-napped! Mat stole some of it to use in one of his recipes. Definitely use a whole large chilli. Don’t let this happen to you!]


Each Monday, I feature a delicious vegan recipe that is enjoyed by my own family  – I hope your family enjoys it too.


About Ally
Mamma. Vegan. I blog at Made of Stars.

13 Responses to {Recipe} Choo Chee Curry Paste – vegan

  1. Pingback: {Recipe} Choo Chee Tofu Curry | Made of Stars

  2. Poppy says:

    I’ve never been a huge fan of Thai food but this looks and sounds so delicious especially with coconut milk that I might just have to give it a shot! P.s your Mat spells his name the same as my Mat, the only time I’ve seen it elsewhere before! :)

    • Ally says:

      haha! Mat with one ‘t’ is rare. I know that Lidia’s (of Vegan Bloggers Unite) partner is a one ‘t’ Mat too.
      I like coconut milk a little bit too much I think…..

      • Poppy says:

        It must be a vegan blogger thing haha!
        Yes, I think I may have an addiction to coconut milk too – I’ve started buying the lighter versions now!!

  3. Sounds excellent. I did a spice flavoured coating for tofu and tempeh last night plus some dipping sauces and totally forgot to take photos! too desperate to eat it which is a problem when thinking about recipe posts.

  4. susykat says:

    Looks amazing! :D

  5. Sophie33 says:

    MMMM! I love this tasty post! I love all of the ingredients you have used in here! Yummmmmmmm! This paste I am going to make tomorrow! ooh yes! x

  6. Brittany says:

    This looks amazing, and has SO many amazing ingredients that will just give my body a GIANT hug!

  7. This is my kind of curry. Thanks for sharing!

  8. liveblissful says:

    Great spice recipe! What vegetables or protein do you make the curry with?

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