Can you believe I didn’t try curry until I was 28 years old? Even then, it was reserved for dining in restaurants; I had no clue how to make it myself.
It was serendipitous that I overheard a person seated behind me on a flight tell the person next to them how they make coconut curry.
“Just saute some onion, garlic and ginger, toss in 2 tablespoons of yellow curry powder, a splash of soy sauce, a bit of sugar and a can of coconut milk.”
In hindsight, I could’ve Googled how to make coconut curry, but instead I pulled a pen and a receipt out of my purse and scribbled the recipe on it. Then, I got to have fun in my kitchen once I got home, making my own interpretations of what “some,” “a splash” and “a bit” meant.
The result was some good curry, some better curry, and some “by Jove, I think I’ve got it!” curry.
Veganizing Coconut Chicken Curry
Traditionally, coconut curry is served over chicken and rice. To substitute the chicken, I opted for wholesome baby gold potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots and peas. Truthfully, any mix of vegetables will work, as long as they are cut into bite-size pieces. This sauce will cover about 4 cups of cooked vegetables.
Serve the curried vegetables over a bed of basmati rice — or any rice that you prefer — and garnish with cilantro and cashews or peanuts.
- ½ cup chopped white or yellow onion about ½ a medium onion
- 1 15 oz can coconut cream or milk
- 2 Tbs curry powder
- 1 Tbs maple syrup
- 1 Tbs soy sauce
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tsp fresh ginger minced
- ½ tsp crushed red chili flakes optional
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 1/2 cups Mini gold potatoes quartered
- 1 cup frozen peas and carrots
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen cauliflower and broccoli crowns
- ¼ cup cashews roasted, salted
- 2 Tbs cilantro leaves roughly chopped
Finely chop onion (I like using a slap-chop tool).
Mince two cloves of fresh garlic.
Peel and mince about a thumb-size piece of fresh ginger. This will be about 2 teaspoons worth, but measure it to be sure.
In a large skillet, melt 1 teaspoon coconut oil over medium-high heat, then saute the onion, garlic and ginger for 3 minutes.
Add the curry powder, maple syrup, soy sauce and crushed red chili (if using) and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add coconut cream, salt and pepper to taste, and whisk until the sauce is thoroughly mixed and contains no lumps.
Bring curry to a boil, then turn heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes.
In the meantime, steam the vegetables.
In a large pot, bring a couple of inches of water to a boil, then place a colander or steamer basket inside. Fill the colander with vegetables, then cover with a lid and steam for 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the veggies. They should be tender, but not too soft.
Add steamed vegetables to the curry in the skillet and stir to coat.
Serve curry and veggies over a bed of cooked rice.
Garnish with cilantro, cashews and/or peanuts if desired.
Coconut cream is essentially coconut milk with a higher fat content. It makes for creamier, tastier curry compared with coconut milk.
I don’t have an actual Original Slap Chop Slicer, but this Farberware Food Chopper works superbly. I use it for chopping and mincing onions, garlic, and ginger, mostly. It also works for other veggies.
For a how-to on cooking basmati rice, see my recipe for Dilly Dilly Lentil Salad.