Butternut pumpkin, peanut and mustard curry


  • 2 tbspghee
  • 4medium eschalots, thinly sliced
  • 4cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 3 cmpiece ginger, finely sliced into slivers
  • ⅓ cupcurry leaves
  • 2 tspmustard seeds
  • ½ tspturmeric powder
  • ½ tsphot chilli powder
  • 1 tspmustard powder (see Note)
  • 1small cinnamon stick
  • 650 gbutternut squash, peeled, cut into medium-sized wedges
  • 140 mlcoconut milk
  • 300 mlwater
  • 100 gfresh podded boiled peanuts (see Note)


Place a medium-sized saucepan over a gentle heat, warm and then add the ghee. Once the ghee has melted add your eschalots, garlic, ginger and curry leaves and gently cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season generously with salt and white pepper. You want all these ingredients to be softened as opposed to fried.

Add the mustard seeds and give them a few minutes in the pan before adding the remaining spices and powders. You will need to stir more ardently here as they spices will stick to the base of the pan. Give them a few minutes to become aromatic and toasty before adding the pumpkin. Stir for a few minutes or so to coat the pumpkin in all the lovely pan flavours. I would add an extra little bit of salt at this stage. Add the coconut milk and water and, as soon as it all begins to simmer, add the peanuts.

Now all that’s needed is the occasional stir as you let the pumpkin simmer away gently for 15–20 minutes. You want to cook it to the stage that it is nicely yielding but before it becomes too mushy. Serve immediately as a side dish or as a simple meal with a bowl of rice.

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