You’d think I’d be bored of talking about curry by now. But I’m really, absolutely, definitely not. In my humble opinion, curry is one of the greatest dishes this world has ever seen – with varieties so wildly different you could eat a new one every day and never sample them all. This vegan coconut curry is one to add to the ‘must eat’ list.
A LOT of recipes get tried and tested for this website, and many get discarded or fall by the wayside in favour of something bigger, or bolder, or generally more exciting. Taste alone isn’t always enough to guarantee a spot on the site (although it really helps) – a recipe needs to stand out in other ways.
What makes this vegan coconut curry so special?
The joy of this recipe is its simplicity. So rarely have we had do to do so little cooking to get such a great result. After a little prepping at the beginning, the ingredients hit the frying pan – and that’s it! They’ll fry along happily while the sauce pretty much cooks itself. It doesn’t get any easier when it comes to effort vs quality ratio. This is one recipe I’ve taken to cooking over and over; it gives me my curry fix with such ease I just can’t get enough.
Know your paste!
Most curries are made in one of two ways – with curry spices (often in the form of powder, at least in the Western world) or with a curry paste. Typically, Indian-style curries use spices or powder, and Thai-type recipes use paste, although not exclusively so.
Curry powders generally contain spices and ingredients like cumin, coriander, turmeric, cloves, cinnamon, pepper and chili powders (check out this article for a more extensive list.)
Pastes are usually made from fresh ingredients like chillies, lemongrass, garlic and ginger, as well as the addition of some of the spices above. They’re often mixed with oil too.
Curry paste tends to be the stronger of the two, however that can vary as well. Usually yellow curry pastes are the mildest in flavour, red is next, and green is the hottest. Vegans and vegetarians should watch out – many curry pastes contain fish derivatives and it’s always worth checking the label first. With curry powders, the lighter, yellowy colours denote a mild dish, while dark or even brown colours mean a much more spicy kick.
Curry spices are great for giving that Indian-esque taste to every bite; curry pastes are excellent to mix with coconut milk. This vegan coconut curry uses both. By doing this we get an Indian-feel recipe and flavour with a more creamy, rich, and slightly sweet sauce. It’s the best of both worlds. Enjoy this stress-free curry with ease – just thank these two wonderful cuisines for their collaboration!
Vegan Coconut Curry
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup broccoli or green beans
- 1 spring onion
- 1 sweet potato
- 2 carrots
- ½ zucchini
- 2 sticks lemongrass
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 1 tbsp yellow curry paste (or red for hotter, green for hottest!)
- 1 can coconut milk (1 can = ca. 400ml)
- 1.5 cups chickpeas, cooked (1.5 cups = 1 tin (ca. 400g wet weight)
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 lemon or lime, juiced
- If serving with rice, get that cooking now according to package instructions.
- Grate the sweet potato and the carrots.
- Chop the spring onion, broccoli, and zucchini.
- Add the olive oil to a large pan and fry all the veg on a medium heat. This needs about 5-7 minutes.
- Next, add the curry powder and curry paste, and the beaten (smack it with a heavy spoon a few times to let out the flavour) lemongrass.
- Stir and fry for another couple of minutes then add the coconut milk, chickpeas, lemon juice, maple syrup and salt. Let it simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Alright, that's it. Take out the lemongrass. Serve with rice and top with the cashews or peanuts. Easy. Awesome.
If you’re a curry lover then you’ve really gotta check out this similar beast - the vegan chickpea curry. It’s delicious. If you’re after a pure ‘Thai’ style curry then have a look at this quick Thai green curry. You can’t go wrong with either!
A big shout out to our amazing chef in Barcelona, Cristina! If you’re in the area and would like cooking classes, you really must check her out!
Please note our nutritional information includes the curry only - not rice or nuts.