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Thai-style curries are a staple in my weeknight roster. They come together in a flash. All you've got to do is sauté some aromatics and curry paste, deglaze with stock, coconut milk, and fish sauce, adjust the seasoning, and simmer your main ingredient until it's cooked through.
This recipe doctors up some store-bought red curry paste with a few extra spices to produce a more complex, nuanced finished dish. Once the stock is ready, shrimp are simmered for just a few moments until cooked through, then the whole thing is served over noodles. Add a handful of quick-cooking greens along with the shrimp (I'd suggest water spinach or baby bok choy), and you've got an all-in-one meal in a bowl.
The kicker here is the fried shallots, which add sweet crunch to every bite. Frying your own shallots is easy, but you can easily use store-bought fried shallots. They can be found in most decent Asian grocers.
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About the author: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Chief Creative Officer of Serious Eats where he likes to explore the science of home cooking in his weekly column The Food Lab. You can follow him at @thefoodlab on Twitter, or at The Food Lab on Facebook.