Len loves vegetables. And so do I. Despite my love for eating meat, I genuinely enjoy eating vegetables and trying out variations of the same dishes. Last week, a family friend - with large farm to his long list of assets - visited us, and brought along with him, a big bag filled with fresh farm produce. There were two pumpkins in the goodie bag, along with generous portions of green beans and potatoes! Yay! If I ever had a farm to myself, I would grow all my vegetables, and have five big dogs as pets. And, also a pony. Sigh... a Halfinger.
What you need:500 gm pumpkin, diced to 1 inch cubes
1 large onion, finely sliced
1 tsp, ginger-garlic paste
Lemon leaves, a handful
1 tsp, red curry paste
1 cup, freshly squeezed-out coconut milk*
1 tbsp, lemon juice
2-3 green chillies, chopped
2 tbsp, oil
Salt, to taste
How to:Pour oil into a non-stick pan, and once hot, add the onions to it. Fry them till they a pale pinkish colour and then stir in the ginger-garlic paste. If you are using a fine paste that has a higher water-content, then it would be a good idea to fry the onions for another minute more before adding the paste. I prefer a fresh, more coarse paste using a mortar and pestle.
Add the red curry paste and stir it around for a couple of minutes, so that the paste melts into the onion mixture before you add the pumpkins. Fry the pumpkin for 10-15 minutes. You could add the salt as well as lemon leaves and chillies at this time. If it gets too dry, add a splash of water, now and then.
Now add the coconut milk and let it simmer away till the pumpkin is very soft and breaks easily with a ladle. You may add the lemon juice or later before serving.
* If you wish, you could substitute coconut milk with fresh desiccated coconut. In this case, add the coconut just after frying the onion-ginger-garlic mix. Cook the coconut till it loses its raw colour before adding the red curry paste.
* You could also add shrimps to this recipe, or prawns, or even crabs for a delicious variation.