October 29, 2011

Thai Pumpkin Curry

It's creamy and warming. A marriage of complex flavors without the complex effort.

This authentic tasting curry is healthy and satisfyingly flavorful. The coconut milk and pumpkin combine to create a luxurious and velvety sauce that is laced with bright bursts of lime balanced by the nutty, caramel tone of sauteed onions and spices. 

Best yet, it comes together in minutes. I used firm tofu because that is what I had on hand, but it's a versatile dish that would be equally wonderful with sauteed chunks of chicken or plump shrimp. Don't be deterred by the coconut milk, which is an ingredient many may not have on hand. It's an essential part of what makes this so authentically Thai. But once you whip up this curry, canned light coconut milk will surely become a pantry staple in your house as it now has in mine (and at about 99 cents a pop, it's a lot cheaper than a plane ticket to Thailand). 

Thai Pumpkin Curry: serves two generously
Canola oil for pan
1/2 package of firm tofu, drained, patted dry, and cubed
1/2 large white or yellow onion, cut into small wedges
2 cloves garlic, pressed
1 T. curry powder
1 t. mustard
1 t. cumin
1 t. turmeric
2 dried chiles de arbol
1/2 cup roasted, salted cashews or almonds
1/2 14.5oz can Pumpkin (not pie filling)
1/2 14.5 oz. can light coconut milk
1/2 cup milk
2 T. dried coconut flakes
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lime
Sea salt to taste
Brown rice for serving

In a large saucepan over medium heat, add enough oil to coat the skillet and heat until it shimmers. Add the onions and tofu, cooking until the onion is soft and golden, 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic, curry, mustard, cumin, turmeric, chiles, and nuts, and stir, 1 minute. Add the coconut milk, pumpkin, milk, and coconut flakes. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for two minutes until slightly thickened. Add the lime zest and lime juice and stir. Salt to taste. Serve over brown rice. 

1 comment:

  1. I made this with chicken last night and it was a big hit! The dish is so vibrant and spicy, I'll definitely make it again. The only ingredient I couldn't find was the dried chilies, so I used a teaspoon of ground cayenne.

    -Colleen T



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