- 6 dried chiles, stemmed, seeded
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 lemongrass stalk, bottom bit only, Skin removed cut into small pieces
- 2 tablespoons sliced peeled fresh galangal
- 2 tablespoons sliced peeled fresh turmeric
- 1/2 cup chopped shallots
- 1/4 cup halved garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon Thai shrimp paste or Trassi
- 2 pounds trimmed beef cut into small cubes
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce, preferably Thai thin soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons ground dried Thai chiles
- 9 cups beef broth, preferably low-salt
- 1 cup halved shallots
- 3 medium carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4 inch thick half-moons (about 1 cup)
- 6 fresh or frozen kaffir lime leaves
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Thinly sliced Thai basil
For curry paste:
In a mortar, pound chiles and salt with a pestle until pulverized, about 5 minutes. Add ingredients one by one in order listed, fully pulverizing each before adding the next, about 15 minutes total. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 week ahead; cover and chill.
Combine curry paste, beef, soy sauce, and ground dried chiles in a pot; stir to evenly coat beef. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add broth and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until beef is tender but not falling apart, 2–2 1/2 hours.
Stir in shallots, carrots, and lime leaves. Simmer until vegetables are just tender, about 10 minutes. If broth is too salty, add water a few tablespoonfuls at a time.
Garnish with cilantro and basil.