Sri Lankan Recipe Series: Creamy Vegan Pumpkin Curry
This big beauty was at the Sri Lankan National Botanical Gardens in Kandy. I couldn’t resist coming in for a snuggle!
Do I have a ginormous treat for you! I’ve been dying to recreate this recipe ever since I got home from Sri Lanka a few weeks ago. And if I do say so myself, this first time making it I hit it out of the park and it is pretty amazing :). ( And this is the first in a series of Sri Lankan recipes I’ll be sharing with you the next few weeks!)
I remember the best version of this dish I had on the trip. We were at a place called “Peanut Farm”, which is a surf spot in Arugambay you can only get to by passing through a long jungle trail (which by the way, happened to be the same spot that I was chased by a wild elephant later on that evening. In case you wondered what else happened on that super adventurous/crazy day!).
So when I say “pumpkin” what I really mean is Kabocha squash! It’s everywhere in Sri Lanka. Technically it’s squash I suppose, but everywhere in Sri Lanka they call it “pumpkin”, which is the same deal in Thailand, Korea and other Asian countries I’ve been to. (Maybe nobody likes to say “squash”?!)
There was a little café-like shack next to the surf break, run by a few enterprising Sri Lankan men (a great business idea to hit up the surfers off the beaten path, with the downside being having to haul all the ingredients by tuk tuk through the jungle!). We ordered the generic “rice and curry”, which means a variety of little veggie bowl concoctions and rice, but you never know specifically which veggie dishes you are going to get.
Well, this version of pumpkin curry came out, and it the most perfectly rich and decadent curry you can imagine: with luscious pumpkin that your fork easily sliced through and scooped up the creamy coconut milk sauce. It was unforgettable!
No worries, I took the time to recreate the recipe for you (and also of course so I could eat it again for myself)! And I will say “you are welcome!” in advance, because I know you will be thanking me later. :)
I am very happy to think of you enjoying this delicious and nutritious dish also!
I usually eat brown rice, but I wanted to go ultra traditional here, the way I ate it in Sri Lanka, and went with the decadently delicious (though less healthy) white rice.
Would it be weird if I just stuck my face in this bowl and slurped it all up? :)
This is my entire Sri Lankan feast I made the other night. Look out for other recipes in my Sri Lankan recipe series the next few weeks!
1medium Kabocha squashreferred to as pumpkin in many Asian countries!
1tspyellow curry powder
½tsp.fenugreek powderif this is too hard to find, just leave it out
1cupof filtered water
1cinnamon stickmy secret ingredient, which adds a unique taste to this curry!
Sea saltto taste
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and roast the pumpkin whole for about 30 minutes, until it softens. Cut about 2 cups in cubes, and put away the rest in an airtight container to eat for lunch the next day.
Heat the coconut oil over medium heat, and stir-fry the onions, garlic, curry powder, turmeric and fenugreek for a few minutes. Add the cubed pumpkin. Stir-fry for a couple more minutes. Add a cup of water, and the cinnamon stick. Now, cover, lower the heat to a simmer and cook for a few minutes.
Finally, dissolve in the coconut milk and bring up the heat. Salt to taste. Serve fresh and hot with rice. Enjoy!