Mixed Vegetable Coconut Curry

Mixed Vegetable Coconut CurryHouston, we have a problem.
Lately, I have been feeling rather out of sorts. Something just didn’t seem right, and for the longest time I couldn’t figure out what it was. But the other day it came to me…I haven’t been canning.

Normally at this time of year, I would have made or would be in the process of making, gallons of pickles, jams, salsas and tomato sauces. I would have been putting up peaches, peppers, beans, and tomatoes for use later in the year. Not this year.

This year’s crop was a ghost crop caused by a number of factors. The first factor? Varmints ate the fruit from my trees. It was looking like we were actually going to have a legitimate crop of nectarines, peaches, and cherries until the four-legged bandits came through.

The second factor? Water. I felt guilty about using the water so I was perhaps less vigilant than normal about keeping things well hydrated.

The third and by far the most destructive: Chickens. They ate everything. Well, almost everything.  I was able to save the butternut squash but had to harvest it all at once instead of keeping some on the vines. Needless to say, I have a glut of butternut squash, so I am trying to use it any way I can.

The really good news is that the chickens should start laying eggs soon, and we will have a glut of eggs. It may not make up for the lack of canned summer tomatoes come January, but it does lessen the sting a little.

Ghanta Tarkari (Mixed Vegetable Coconut Curry)
Adapted from Saveur Magazine

A vegetarian, Indian dish from the state of West Bengal that features squash, potatoes, zucchini and cucumber enriched with ghee and sweetened with grated coconut. Gently spiced with clove, cardamom, and cinnamon, it gets a touch of heat from green chiles. This recipe first appeared in their August/September 2014 special India issue.

⅓ cup ghee (for vegan option use coconut oil)
6 green cardamom pods
6 whole cloves
5 small green Thai chiles or 2 serranos, halved
2 Indian or regular bay leaves
1 stick cinnamon, halved
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1″ pieces
1 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces
2 medium zucchini, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces
1 1 large cucumber, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces
Kosher salt, to taste
½ cup fresh or frozen grated coconut
1 tsp. sugar

Melt half the ghee in a 6-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook cardamom, cloves, chiles, bay leaves, and cinnamon 1–2 minutes.

Add squash and potatoes, and cook until golden, 8–10 minutes. Stir in the cucumber and salt. Cook until just tender, 4–6 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium; cook, covered, until vegetables are very tender, 12–15 minutes. Stir in remaining ghee, the coconut, and sugar. Cook 2 minutes.

Comments are closed.