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Khmer yellow kroeung (kroeung samlor mauchoo)

Like in Thai cuisine, many Cambodian food preparations utilise pounded spice and herb pastes as a base in various dishes. One of the most versatile is this yellow kroeung recipe, bright coloured from turmeric and especially aromatic from lemongrass and galangal.
Cuisine: Cambodian
Servings: 105 grams


  • Pestle and mortar


  • Generous pinch salt
  • 55 grams thinly sliced lemongrass 2-3 stems, depending on size
  • 10 grams chopped galangal
  • ½ teaspoon makrut lime zest
  • 15 grams chopped garlic
  • 25 grams sliced or chopped shallot
  • ½ teaspoon ground dried turmeric


  • Remove any tough outer layers from the lemongrass stalks and chop into thin rounds. The concentration of aromatic oils is in the lower end of the grass. Hence it is better to use more stems of lemongrass, utilising the lower half of the stem only, and reserving the upper lengths for things like tom yum soup.
  • Add all of the ingredients to a pestle and mortar, in order of how they are listed. Pound each ingredient to a paste before adding the next. Try to pound each ingredients to as smooth a paste as possible before proceeding.
  • Refrigerate and use in curries, stir fries, soups, and whatever else you'd like.


Makes a rounded ½ cup (approximately 105 grams)