1 lb (~500 g) fresh raw green beans, ends trimmed and chopped into 2 inch length pieces
1 heaping tablespoon shrimp paste
2 tablespoons water
8 garlic cloves
8 red chili peppers (substitute with 1 tablespoon dry ground red chili peppers)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons fish sauce
2-3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (~juice of 1 large lime)
In a small pan, heat the shrimp paste and water on high heat for just a minute or two, mashing together with a spatula until well mixed and bubbling. Add the shrimp paste to a mortar & pestle.
Add the garlic, red chili peppers and sugar to a Thai mortar & pestle. Mash together until a chunky paste is formed. Add the green beans by the handful, using the pestle to mash everything together after each handful. Once you have all the green beans in the mortar & pestle, add the fish sauce and lime juice and use a large spoon to scoop the ingredients at the bottom and turn it over so that everything gets mashed equally. Do this for a few minutes until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
***Alternatively, if you don’t have a mortar & pestle, you can place the ingredients in a large zip lock bag and mash with a meat pounder or rolling pin.