Thai Red Curry with Chicken and Bamboo

In our experience red curry certainly seems to be less popular than green curry amongst British Thai restaurant diners and we believe this could be down to the misconception that a red curry is more than likely to be too hot to handle.
Despite popular belief, red curry is usually the milder of Thailand’s two most famous curry dishes.

This recipe calls for the addition of Thai sweet basil (horapa) leaves which will make all the difference to this dish. You should be able to find sweet basil in your local oriental supermarket.


  • 400g sliced chicken breast
  • 1 can coconut milk (we recommend Chaokoh brand)
  • 3 tbsp red curry paste (an authentic Thai brand is preferable to supermarket alternatives)
  • 1 tin bamboo shoots, drained and thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 5 kaffir lime leaves, sliced
  • 2 red spur chilies, diagonally sliced


  • 1. Empty the coconut milk into a pan reserving the thickest part (top of the can) and heat over a medium. As it begins to boil add the curry paste. Continue to heat until the red oil of the paste begins to surface.
  • 2. Add the sliced chicken breast and simmer on a low heat.
  • 3. Next add sugar, salt and fish sauce and bring to the boil. Add sliced kaffir lime leaves and chilies and stop the heat.
  • 4. Stir in the sweet basil before serving with steamed rice. Garnish with some fresh sweet basil leaves.


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