Burmese Pork Curry

In Thai, this dish is called Gaeng Hungleh, and it's also called "Chiang Mai Pork Curry", this dish is a specialty of northern Thailand. It originated in the foods that the Burmese bought with them when they occupied the Lanna kingdom, which had its capital in Chiang Mai, from the sixteenth to the eighteenth century. Unlike most Thai curries, it uses only the tiniest bit of coconut milk, and some versions of the recipe use none at all.

There are indeed a great many versions of this dish, since the Burmese origins of the name imply an improvised dish, put together with whatever was on hand. Pork is always the meat used in Thailand, but you should be able to substitute chicken or beef with good results.

Burmese Curry

Burmese pork curry

Curry Paste


Dried Chillies5
Galangal1 tspMinced
Lemongrass1 TblChopped
Garlic1 TblMinced
Shallots2 TblChopped
Coconut Milk1 tsp
Salt1 tsp

Preparation Method

  • Make the curry paste by pounding all the ingredients together with a mortar and pestle to form a thick paste. Of course, you can do it the "easy way" and use a food processor.

Burmese Pork Curry


Pork Tenderloin1 kg / 2 lbsCut in cubes
Dark Soy Sauce1 Tbl
Water1 liter / 4 c
Curry Powder1 Tbl
Ginger25 g / 2 TblShredded
Garlic35 g / 2 TblPeeled
Tamarind Juice3 to 4 Tbl

Preparation Method

  • Sprinkle the dark soy sauce over the cubed pork.
  • Mix in the prepared curry paste with the meat, and allow to marinate about 1 hour.
  • In a large pot, brown the pork over low heat. Add the water, cover the pot and simmer until liquid is reduced.
  • Add ginger, garlic and curry powder. Continue simmering until pork is tender and liquid is evaporated.
  • Season with the tamarind juice. The taste should be a balance of sour, salty and spicy. If necessary, add salt.

To be completely authentic, Burmese Curry should be served with sticky rice.

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