Sunday, June 3, 2012

Malaysian Sweet Potato Curry

Found this recipe several years ago, when I was looking for something to make with sweet potato that was soupy without actually being a soup. What attracted me to this dish was the use of almond meal in the curry, and it always turns out good even with a bit of tweaking here and there. The untweaked version is by Nick Nairn and can be found in the Ready Steady Cook book published by BBC Books in 2003. Got the book on sale at the Pakenham book shop, which sadly is no more.

What you’ll need:
*500g sweet potato, peeled and cut into chunks
*1 red onion, sliced
*1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
*1 teaspoon chopped garlic
*2 red bird’s eye chillies or 1-2 teaspoons chilli flakes
*1 lemon grass stalk (didn’t have any so used a couple of lemon grass leaves from the pot plant that’s too juvenile to have thick stalks, combined with a kaffir lime leaf), finely chopped
*2 tablespoons ground almond (sold as ‘almond meal’ in Australia)
*2 tablespoons oil
*1 teaspoon cumin powder
*1 teaspoon coriander powder
*1 teaspoon red chilli powder
*½ teaspoon turmeric powder (the original recipe calls for 1 teaspoon)
*300ml vegetable stock/water (or water plus one stock cube)
*400g coconut cream/milk
*1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper (or to taste)
*juice of 1 lime (have never used it)
“Chopped fresh coriander leaves for garnish (wasn’t used today, as I was serving the curry with the green bean dish that follows this post).

What to do:
The original recipe calls for the onion, garlic, ginger, fresh chillies, lemon grass, almonds, oil and spices to be pureed, then stir-fried.
I’ve never liked the prospect of cleaning out the oily mess left behind in the food processor, so prefer to the following method:
Fry sliced onions in oil until edges brown, then add garlic, ginger, fresh chillies. Stir fry for several minutes, then add sweet potato chunks. Fry until sweet potato is well coated, then add spices, including salt, pepper and almond meal. Stir fry until fragrant. Then add water/stock and coconut cream. Also add kaffir lime leaf and lemon grass. Bring to a boil. Then simmer for 15-20 minutes until sweet potato is cooked. Take off fire, and if using, add lime juice and chopped coriander leaves.

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