Watch as Luke cooks up a local northern-style frog curry using a beautiful paste of galangal, lemongrass, red onion and makrut lime leaves.


Skill level

Average: 3.9 (19 votes)


  • 2 frogs, cleaned, butterflied
  • 5 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 snake beans, roughly chopped
  • 3 wing beans, sliced
  • 10 pea eggplants
  • 1 handful ivy gourd leaves
  • 4 betel leaves, torn
  • 4 sasbania flowers, stamen removed, plus 2 extra, to garnish
  • 4 makrut lime leaves, torn
  • 5 bird’s eye chilli, smashed
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp sliced spring onion, to garnish
  • 1 tbsp sliced coriander, to garnish

Chilli paste

  • ¼ cup finely chopped lemongrass
  • ¼ cup finely chopped galangal
  • 4 makrut lime leaves, finely sliced
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped garlic
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped red Asian shallots
  • 13 dried chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fermented shrimp paste
  • 2 tbsp fermented fish paste

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Chargrill the frogs over medium heat for 10 minutes each side. Remove and discard the feet and hands. Divide each frog into 8 pieces.

To prepare the chilli paste, in a mortar and pestle, add each ingredient, one at a time, and pound well. Add the shrimp and fish pastes, and stir to incorporate. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Add a few tablespoons of water to the mortar, cleaning both mortar and pestle with the water. Reserve the liquid for later.

Add the vegetable oil to a hot wok, followed by the garlic and chilli paste. Sauté for 3 minutes until fragrant. Add the frog and stir-fry for 2 minutes.

Add the snake beans, wing beans and pea eggplant, and stir-fry for a further 2 minutes.

Add the ivy gourd leaves, betel leaves, sasbania flowers and reserved chilli paste water. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes. Add the makrut lime leaves, bird’s eye chilli and fish sauce.

Stir-fry for a further minute and transfer to a serving platter.

Garnish with spring onion, coriander and extra sasbania flowers.