Thursday, December 3, 2009

Butternut Squash & Sweet Potato Curry With Gravy

Who wouldn't love a recipe that creates its own gravy? The starches from the squashes, sweet & regular potatoes contribute to the creamy gravy. Here is a wonderful Saucy Curry using winter squashes or sweet potatoes which are far more nutritious as well as tasty than the typical curry with regular potatoes alone. Use the squashes or sweet potatoes singly or in combination; of course potato lovers can include a couple of potatoes if you must :-).

All types of winter squashes (pumpkin-like vegetables) such as Acorn, Butternut, Kabocha, etc will work well; both the orange-fleshed yams or the cream colored sweet potatoes can be used with equal success. Enjoy!


1 medium Onion
4 thin slices Fresh Ginger
1 or 2 hot Green Chili
1 small Winter Squash (Acorn, Butternut, Pumpkin, etc)
1 Medium Sweet Potato
1 medium Potato (Optional)
1 cup steamed green bean pieces or a handful of green peas
1/2 tsp Turmeric
1 tsp Sea Salt or to taste
1/4 cup Cilantro, chopped
Lime/Lemon juice or Wedges to Serve


1 Tbsp Oil
1/2 tsp Brown Mustard Seeds
1 or 2 Dry Red Chilies
1 Tbsp Chana Dal
1 Tbsp Urad Dal
1 pinch Asafetida
1 sprig Fresh Curry Leaves, minced


Winter Squash and Sweet Potatoes: Wash well, peel, and cut into 1" chunks or wedges.

Potatoes: Wash and scrub them well. It is not necessary to peel them; cut into 1" chunks or wedges.

Onions: Cut off ends, peel, and chop finely.

Chilies: Leave stem end intact and slit the ends (to be removed from curry at the end of cooking) OR cut in half, remove seeds and membranes and mince.

Heat oil in a large pot and when hot, add the mustard seeds, red chilies, and the dals. When the mustard finishes popping and the dals turn pink, quickly add the asafetida and curry leaves along with the onions, green chili, ginger and a pinch of salt.

Cook stirring until the onions are translucent and slightly caramelized adding a sprinkle or two of water if too dry. Add turmeric, veggies, the rest of the salt and 1 or 2 cups of boiling water depending on the amount of gravy you might like. More boiling water can be added later if the curry does not have enough gravy.

Cover and simmer gently until the veggies are soft - about 20 to 25 minutes. If the gravy is not creamy enough, mash a couple of veggie pieces with the back of the spoon.

Stir in the green beans/peas and heat through.

Remove from heat, cover and set aside for 5 minutes.

Remove green chilies from the curry if left whole so that no one inadvertently bites into one thinking it is a green bean (yes, that happened much to my chagrin).

Stir in chopped cilantro before serving. Add the lime/lemon juice to the curry or serve wedges for individual diners to use if desired; the tangy citrus flavor brightens and compliments the sweetness of the squashes and sweet potatoes.

Serve hot or warm with rice, puris/rotis, or dosa.

Note: A handful or two of cooked chick peas (garbanzos) make a nice addition to this curry increasing its nutritional value as well as taste.

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