The Evolution of Thai Curry Pastes

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ทัตดารา กาญจนกุญชร • Taddara Kanchanakunjara
ทรงคุณ จันทจร Songkoon Chantachon
มาริสา โกเศยะ


This is a qualitative cultural research investigation to examine the history of traditional Thai curry pastes in central Thailand. Three higher education institutions were purposively selected as the research area, which were School of the Oriental Hotel Apprenticeship Program (Thai Cuisine Management Course), Suan Dusit International Culinary School (Intensive Thai Cooking Course) and Rajamangala University of Technology, Krungthep Phranakhon Tai Campus (Food and Nutrition Course). The research sample included 6 key informants, 15 casual informants and 170 general informants. Data were collected through observations, interviews, focus group discussions and workshops. Data was validated using a triangulation method and the results are presented here as a descriptive analysis. The results show that Thai curry pastes originated in the Sukhothai period of Thai history. The components of the pastes came from areas near waterways, where plants and spices were grown, where animals were raised for consumption, where condiments were used to flavour food and where food was imported from China. During the Ayutthaya period, kapi (shrimp paste) became a popular ingredient in curry pastes, along with more varied herbs and spices and other strong-smelling plants and meats. Seafood also became more prevalent and tastes were influenced by the flavours of China, Japan, Persia, France, the Mon Kingdom, Portugal, India and the Netherlands. Traditional Thai curry pastes are often flavoured with lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and coconut milk. The other spices in the pastes varies from location to location but traditional Thai curry pastes have found popularity throughout the world.

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• Taddara Kanchanakunjara ท. . ก., Songkoon Chantachon ท. . จ., & โกเศยะ ม. (2018). The Evolution of Thai Curry Pastes. Dusit Thani College Journal, 11(special), 249–266. Retrieved from
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