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chicken & eggplant panang curry with rice chips

Cooking the chicken & eggplant first on a grill pan, makes the curry look even better & gives a subtle smokiness to the dish. If that sounds like too much work, scrap this step & brown the eggplant & chicken in batches in a wok or large skillet – whatever you’re cooking the curry in. Using a store-bought curry paste speeds up the prep of this delicious creamy curry from South-East Asia. I bought my panang curry paste from an Asian market but it can also purchased online. The brand I use is Mae Ploy (link in the post). Use whatever eggplant is available to you.
Prep Time20 mins
20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: South East Asian
Keyword: Panang Curry, Penang Curry, Thai Curry
Servings: 4
Calories: 587kcal


  • grill pan
  • work or large skillet


  • 3 to 4 Japanese eggplants, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices about 20 oz (aubergine)
  • coconut or peanut oil, plus 1 tablespoon extra (could also use canola oil)
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs (about 3 to 4)
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
  • 1/3 cup Panang curry paste I used Mae Ploy brand
  • 14 oz can coconut milk not low fat
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons grated palm sugar or brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 4 round rice paper wrappers for the chips
  • 1/2 cup packed Thai basil leaves, plus extra for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/3 cup toasted cashews, chopped
  • steamed jasmine rice to serve, optional


  • Toss eggplant slices with a little oil, salt & pepper. Cook in a hot grill pan for 3 minutes each side or until softened & grill marks appear; set aside. (If you’re using larger eggplants, cut each slice into quarters after cooking.)
  • Lightly coat the chicken in oil. Cook in hot grill pan for 5 minutes each side until browned. Chop the chicken into cubes.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of extra oil in a large wok or frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic & ginger. Cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add curry paste; stir for 30 seconds until fragrant.
  • Add coconut milk, broth, sugar, fish sauce & chicken. Bring to a simmer. Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes until thickened slightly.
  • While the chicken is cooking, microwave rice rounds, one at a time, for 50 seconds on high until puffed & crisp. If they’re not completely puffed, turn & microwave another 20 to 30 seconds.
  • Add the eggplant to the curry; stir. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes until the eggplant is hot.
  • Add the basil leaves & lime juice; stir to combine.
  • Sprinkle the cashews & extra basil leaves over the curry. Serve with rice, lime wedges & rice chips.


Calories: 587kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 24g | Cholesterol: 109mg | Sodium: 1063mg | Potassium: 1084mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 3330IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 96mg | Iron: 5mg