The Circus Gardener's Kitchen

seasonal vegetarian recipes with a side helping of food politics

aubergine, butternut and lentil massaman curry

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This recipe for aubergine, butternut and lentil massaman curry is the latest in a monthly series of recipes I have created in partnership with Suma Wholefoods.

In these recipes, I use products from Suma’s extensive range of organic and ethically sourced products, and the recipes appear both here on my blog and on the Suma website.

Massaman curry is a Thai dish which may well have originated from the Middle East. It is a relatively mild curry in terms of heat but it more than compensates for this through its layers of rich, exotic flavours.

aubergine, butternut and lentil massaman curry

1 onion, finely chopped
2 aubergines, approx 600 g, chopped into 1-2 cm cubes
650 g butternut squash, approx 600 g, peeled and chopped into roughly 3cm cubes
100 g red lentils, rinsed and drained
500 g vegetable stock
400 ml can organic coconut milk
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp sea salt

for the infused cooking oil
80 ml liquid coconut oil
12 cloves
4 star anise
1 tsp dried chilli flakes

for the curry paste
20 g unsalted roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 cm piece fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 red chillies, seeds in, finely chopped
1 banana shallot, or small red onion, finely chopped
2 lemongrass stalks, tough outer leaves removed, finely chopped
juice of 1 lime
25 g red miso paste
½ tsp sea salt

to serve
steamed or boiled Jasmine rice
10g fresh coriander, finely chopped
10 g unsalted roasted peanuts, roughly chopped

1. First make the infused oil. Pour the liquid coconut oil into a large pan or wok and place over a high heat. As soon as the oil begins to shimmer, remove from the heat and add the star anise, cloves and dried chilli flakes. They will immediately begin to bubble and fizz. Stir to combine then leave to cool and infuse for at least thirty minutes before straining the oil through a muslin cloth or fine sieve. Set this strained infused oil to one side.

2. For the curry paste, place the peanuts, lime juice, miso paste, garlic, ginger, chilli, shallot, lemongrass, cinnamon and sea salt into a blender or pestle and mortar and grind or process until the ingredients are blended into a paste.

3. Clean the wok, place over a medium heat and pour in 2 tablespoons of the infused oil. Once the oil is hot, add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until soft and translucent. Add the aubergines, along with the remaining oil and stir in three tablespoons of the curry paste (the remaining curry paste can be stored in an airtight container for up to two weeks in the fridge). Stir fry for five minutes, then add the cumin, ground coriander, turmeric and cinnamon. Stir to combine, then add the butternut squash, lentils, vegetable stock, sea salt and the coconut milk. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat enough to maintain a gentle simmer and cook for 35-40 minutes, stirring every so often, or until the aubergine is completely soft.

4. Remove the curry from the heat and serve immediately, accompanied by jasmine rice and scattered with some finely chopped fresh coriander and chopped peanuts.

Categories: dairy free, gluten free, vegan, vegetarian


4 replies

  1. Looks perfect for a chilly autumn evening!

  2. What a great combination of veg for a massaman curry! And the red miso sounds like such a interesting savoury addition to the curry paste.

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