Thai Pumpkin & Chicken Curry
- 1 small pumpkin or butternut squash, about
1 1/2 lb., halved, seeded, peeled and cut into
- 2 shallots, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 1 Tbs. Thai red curry paste
- 1 can (13 1/2 fl. oz.) unsweetened coconut milk
- 2 Tbs. Asian fish sauce
- Juice of 1 lime
- 2 tsp. firmly packed light brown sugar
- 3 Tbs. corn or peanut oil
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into
- 2 Tbs. slivered fresh basil, preferably Thai basil
- Steamed rice for serving
Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the pumpkin and boil just until barely tender, about 7 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
Prepare the curry base
In a blender, combine the shallots, garlic and curry paste with 2 Tbs. water and process until smooth. In a small bowl, combine the coconut milk, fish sauce, lime juice and brown sugar and stir to dissolve the sugar.
Cook the curry
In a wok or large fry pan over medium heat, warm 2 Tbs. of the oil. Add the chicken and sear until light brown on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to a bowl.
Return the pan to medium heat and add the remaining 1 Tbs. oil. Add the curry base and cook, stirring, for about 10 seconds until fragrant. Stir in the coconut milk mixture and bring to a boil. Add the chicken and pumpkin, reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the pumpkin is tender when pierced with a fork and the chicken is opaque throughout, about 5 minutes more.
Transfer the curry to a serving bowl, garnish with the basil and serve immediately with steamed rice. Serves 4.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Asian, by Farina Wong Kingsley (Oxmoor House, 2007).