Thai Curry Noodles with Shrimp

January 24, 2011
6 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

Curry noodles are a favorite food. I know everything is my favorite food, but Thai street food, especially the kind sold off a boat floating dock side, has to be really good food. A big batch of sauteed Asian greens would be a nice side. - thirschfeld —thirschfeld

Test Kitchen Notes

This terrific recipe delivers – in spades – everything we’ve come to expect from the generous offerings of thirshfeld: a perfect balance of flavors, crystal clear instructions, and an extraordinary end result. Pay close attention to the warning at the end of Step 2 , where Mr. H wisely notes that you may be frying more scallions than those initially sliced. In fact, the only thing I’d change in this recipe is to tell the cook to double the quantity of scallions at the outset, as those crispy onion-y bits are outrageously tasty and wickedly addictive. . . which also happens to describe rather nicely the entire dish. ;o) —AntoniaJames

What You'll Need
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for shallot-frying
  • 1 cup shallots, sliced into rounds
  • 2 pinches salt, plus more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 pound lo mein noodles or thin spaghetti, cooked according to directions and cooled
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon red curry paste
  • 1 tablespoon madras curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
  • 2 1/4 cups unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock or unsalted chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/3 cup scallions, sliced for garnish
  • 1 lime quartered for garnish
  1. Heat a large pot over medium high heat. Add a half inch of oil to the pot. Season the shallots with salt. Combine the flour and the cornstarch and then add it to the shallots. Toss the shallots so they become coated with the flour. Shake off excess flour.
  2. When the temp of the oil is 325° F, fry the shallots until they are crispy. Don't let them brown to much or they will taste burned. Remove them from the pan to a paper towel lined plate and season them with salt. Put them somewhere where you won't be tempted or you will find yourself having to fry more.
  3. Drain the pot of oil. Rinse and dry it. Place it back over medium high heat.
  4. Combine the garlic, curry paste, madras curry powder, tumeric, and cumin. Add the 2 tablespoons of oil to the pot. Add the garlic and spices. Sear the spices just until fragrant and then add the coconut milk, stock, fish sauce, and sugar. Bring to a boil and them reduce the heat to a simmer.
  5. Simmer for about 20 minutes to get the flavors to meld. Taste, it is probably going to taste salty but not to worry when you add the noodles it will cure itself of this issue but now would be the time to add more fish sauce of you think it needs it. Add the shrimp, let them cook to almost done and then turn the heat to high. Add 1 tablespoon of lime juice and bring the sauce just to a boil then turn it off.
  6. Place the noodles in a strainer and run hot water over them to warm them. Drain them and divide them among 4 bowls. Sauce the noodles with shrimp, curry sauce and then top with shallots and green onions. Serve with a lime on the side.
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See what other Food52ers are saying.

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  • molls to the wall
    molls to the wall

41 Reviews

Lynn B. June 25, 2023
Thank the stars for the internet, where I can still find this! This dish has become a regular in the kitchen rotation, a fave comfort food. My few change-ups to the wonderful existing recipe: extra-thick udon, onion and red bell pepper al dente (and sometimes sugar snap peas) for substance, a teeny bit of garlic, a pinch of sugar, water chestnuts. I use Maesri Karee Curry Paste, my absolute go-to.
Happygoin December 22, 2021
Why oh why did I wait so long to make this!? It’s my new favorite comfort food. Oh my word, is it good.
BruceFarr December 1, 2020
Rarely do I find an online recipe that yields such stellar results as this one. I followed the directions explicitly, and ended up with a dish so flavorful and succulent that I can't stop thinking about it. Oh, and don't forget to make or buy some good-quality naan to mop up that curry!
Rachel April 17, 2017
Love this!
Radiodugger April 12, 2016
This really ROCKS! But save yourself some time! Don't fry the shallots! Buy em'! Here ya go:

If ya go to an Oriental Asian market, get 'em in BIG jars! Coconut milk is found in cans:

Amy November 4, 2015
Has anyone made this with Thai rice noodles? Wondering if there is any reason that wouldn't work?
mklug December 14, 2015
Amy--I for some reason can't make rice, and I LOVE rice noodles--that's what I usually make it with and it's wonderful (otherwise I add a little more liquid and call it soup)!
arhoad October 4, 2015
I made this tonight with more curry paste than called for and added thai basil. I also had no cumin, so I substituted coriander. Delicious!
sylvia April 24, 2015
first, I made this with udon noodles, green curry instead of red, and a carrot and cabbage slaw and it was good, but really I fell in love with the recipe when I used the leftover sauce and stir fried it (as best as you can with soupy sauce) with sticky rice and added some peas.
jack D. January 15, 2014
a cup of shallots ???!!! was that a typo
thirschfeld January 19, 2014
Yes a cup of shallots. It ends up being 3 large or about 5 medium shallots
DesireeDuym August 22, 2013
I have made this once a month since finding this recipe! I substitute chicken; cooking it with the spice paste and then simmering with the rest of the ingredients. LOVE the fried green onions and sometimes fry some jalapeño rings with them to add to the garnish.
Kristina R. January 7, 2013
bonafide delicious!!! has the hallmark of all great recipes, it's brilliance allows for endless improvisations. going to add greens or napa cabbage next time with some julienned carrots and cucumbers on top. thank you for another fantastic recipe to put in the family weeknight rotation
Lilismom January 4, 2013
My husband does not eat fish or shellfish. I'm going to try it with chicken instead.
cookingProf March 31, 2012
My daughter and I made this for lunch today. We love Thai food and we (including my husband and daughter) concluded that this recipe competes with the best of the best we have ever eaten.
Thanks for the great recipe. Will be making this again soon (maybe with jasmine rice).
AntoniaJames February 9, 2012
Made this again last night using chunks of cod instead of shrimp. Outstanding!! This is one of our favorite recipes of FOOD52 ever (and we have tried, and I make on a regular basis, many FOOD52 recipes). Thank you, thirschfeld. ;o)
Lilismom November 13, 2014
The cod sound delicious. I'm going to make it tonight!
molls T. February 9, 2012
Had enough to take lunch the next day and while I thoroughly enjoyed it right after making it, dare I say this is even better as left overs?
LLStone January 15, 2012
We ate this last night and finished the rest off for lunch today. It was so good - I'm planning how quickly I can make this again! Loved the shallots, and the curry sauce was delicious. Great recipe.
Equator180 January 7, 2012
Shrimp, like beef or any other main food item comes in many different sizes, flavors and textures. There is no mention of the species of shrimp in this resicepe; the best "farmed." shrimp would be a monodon, (Kobe beef) commonly know as Black Tiger Prawn and I would suggest size of 26/30 pieces per kg. You can now find tigers, fresh, never frozen or slacked out, grown in extensive farms not intensive ones requiring many additives to ensure good health. Of course you can go for wild caught and that is a whole different story but don't let anyone tell you the white, grey or glass farmed prawn is superior, it is NOT! It is grown in very dense populations and needs a lot of help to survive..that species is Vannamei
jhoranco November 30, 2011
This one goes into the rotation. The shallots are wonderful, but for a weeknight, I think I'll skip them and add cilantro next time. Thanks!
stacy.shanti June 26, 2011
Wow. This is one of the best dishes I have ever made....and I cook a lot. Wonderfully complex and balanced - the heat of the curry paste with the subtle sweetness of the coconut milk and oh my, those shallots. Too good!

I eat a vegetarian diet so I substituted marinated, broiled tofu for the shrimp and white miso paste for the fish sauce. My dining companion, who is not vegetarian, said he wouldn't change a thing.

Excellent recipe! Delicious results!
Fran M. May 5, 2011
I would like to ask a question about the coconut milk because i am not sure. I have a quart of coconut milk in the fridge that I use on cereal or to drink its a lot thinner than the coconut milk you get in the can. Which coconut milk is the correct one to use in this recipe?
thirschfeld May 5, 2011
I used the canned but if the carton has a good cocnut flavor I am sure you could sub it in. Just maybe don't use as much as the recipe calls for. If you have extra virgin cocnut oil this would be a good place to use it too