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Curried Frogs Legs


4 pairs of jumbo frog s legs (about 1, pound), trimmed
1 stalk fresh lemon grass, or 1 table, spoon dried lemon
2 fresh red chile peppers, seeded and, sliced
2 shallots, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp curry paste
2 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp nuoc mam (vietnamese fish sauce)
2 oz cellophane (bean thread) noodles
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 cup chicken broth or water
1/2 cup coconut milk or heavy cream
1 tsp cornstarch
1 freshly ground black pepper
1 coriander sprigs, for garnish

This delicious lemon grass and coconut-laced curry comes from
southern Vietnam. If you prefer a very hot curry, simply use more
chile peppers.

Cut the frogs legs into bite-size pieces. Rinse with cold water
to remove any chipped bones. Pat dry and refrigerate.

If you are using fresh lemon grass, discard the outer leaves and
upper half of the stalk. Cut into thin slices and finely chop. If you
are using dried lemon grass, soak it in warm water for 1 hour. Drain
and finely chop.

In a blender, combine the lemon grass with the chiles, shallots,
garlic, sugar, curry paste, curry powder, salt and 1 tablespoon of
the fish sauce. Process to a very fine paste. Rub the paste over the
frogs legs. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, soak the cellophane noodles in warm water for 30
minutes. Drain. Cut into 2-inch sections.

Heat the oil in a saucepan over moderate heat. Add the onion and
saute until translucent. Add the frogs legs and brown well on all
sides, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Uncover the pan and add the coconut milk, the cornstarch diluted
in 1 tablespoon of cold water and the remaining 1 table- spoon fish
sauce. Cook, stirring, until the sauce thickens, about 15 minutes.

Add the cellophane noodles and bring the mixture to a boil.
Remove from the heat.

Sprinkle with black pepper and garnish with coriander sprigs.

Serve immediately with rice, French bread or over rice noodles.

Note: Instead of discarding the upper half of the lemon grass,
crush it and cook it with the frogs legs for extra flavor. Remove
the stalk before serving.


Servings: 4



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