Sunday, January 10, 2010

Recipe: Coconut Squash Curry

This dish, known as Olan, is from in the coastal state of Kerala in India. Swati and I first came across this dish while planning the menu for our wedding.

I love this dish and we've made it several times since our wedding. The coconut milk gives this dish a rich, creamy taste, while also being completely dairy-free! It's also refreshing to find an Indian recipe that uses winter squash and is free of the usual nightshade vegetables. I never thought I'd find a seasonal Indian dish for winter time. But now I have!

We used butternut squash for this dish, but you could easily substitute any winter squash or even sweet potatoes. Traditionally, this dish uses chili peppers instead of Thai curry paste, but sometimes one has to improvise! This dish should be enjoyed over rice. Enjoy.

Serves 4-5

1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp brown mustard seeds
5-6 curry leaves 
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
2 1/2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp Thai Kitchen red curry paste
15 oz coconut milk (1 can)
2 cups cooked black-eyed peas (from 3/4 cup dry or 1 can)

In a large pot, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add mustard seeds to oil. Wait until seeds start to pop, then add the curry leaves. Add the onions and cook a 2-3 minutes until translucent.

Next, add the butternut squash, coriander, salt, and Thai curry paste. Saute for a minute or two until spices coat the squash. Add 1/2 cup of water to help the squash cook. Cover and cook for 10 minutes until squash is somewhat soft and water has boiled off.

Add coconut milk and the cooked black-eyed peas. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Check for salt. Remove from heat. Serve over brown rice.


Quail said...

A recipe like this is also good with fresh ginger cut into julienne and sauted at the beginning.

Anu said...

Sounds delicious - but I wouldn't call it Olan :)

mangomama said...

ameet, I made it this morning.. delicious! i just used a bit less coconut milk. and i couldn't find mustard seeds or curry leaves at whole foods yesterday, so i skipped them.. still tasted great! thanks for sharing this recipe!

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