Squash, chickpea & coconut curry

A pizza sitting on top of a pan on a table Vegetarian Comfort Food Recipes

Preparation and cooking time

  • Prep:25 mins
  • Cook:1 hr
  • Easy
  • Serves 4

Cook up this vibrant vegan curry that makes the most of autumnal squash. It’s ideal for a meat-free Monday dinner when served with flatbreads

Nutrient Unit
kcal 484
fat 33g
saturates 26g
carbs 31g
sugars 12g
fibre 10g
protein 11g
salt 0.1g


  • 1 kabocha, red kuri, crown prince or butternut squash , peeled, deseeded, cut into 2cm-thick slices
  • 3 tbsp coconut or rapeseed oil
  • 5 tbsp tamarind sauce
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp dried or fresh curry leaves
  • 1 red onion , sliced
  • thumb-sized piece of ginger , grated
  • 1 garlic clove , crushed
  • 1 green chilli , sliced
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, lightly bashed
  • 400g can chickpeas , drained
  • 1 large tomato , sliced
  • 1 tbsp roasted curry powder (see recipe, right)
  • 1 tsp turmeric , freshly grated if possible, or use 1 tsp ground
  • 400ml can coconut milk
  • 3 large handfuls of kale
  • small bunch of coriander , leaves picked
  • 2 tbsp toasted coconut flakes (optional)
  • flatbreads , to serve

For the roasted curry powder

  • 10g basmati rice
  • 20g coriander seeds
  • 15g cumin seeds
  • 10g black peppercorns
  • 5g fenugreek seeds
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • ½ tsp green cardamom pods, seeds only


  • STEP 1

For the curry powder, heat a small frying pan over a medium heat and toast the rice, stirring, until it starts to brown. Tip in the rest of the spices and toast for 3-5 mins until brown but not burned. Using a spice grinder or pestle and mortar, blitz or grind to a fine powder. Pass through a sieve. Will keep for up to three months in an airtight container.

  • STEP 2

Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Toss the squash with 1 tbsp of the oil, a pinch of salt, 3 tbsp of the tamarind sauce, the chilli flakes and coconut. Spread out on a baking sheet and bake for 35-40 mins, or until tender.

  • STEP 3

Heat the remaining 2 tbsp oil in a wok over a high heat. Fry the mustard seeds for a minute or so until they sizzle and pop, then add the curry leaves and cook for a few more seconds until they crackle. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, chilli, lemongrass and a pinch of salt and stir for a few minutes until the onion softens. Tip in the chickpeas, tomato, curry powder and turmeric and keep stirring for 5-8 mins, until the tomato breaks down.

  • STEP 4

Pour the coconut milk into the wok and stir, cooking for about 5 mins until slightly reduced. Add the remaining 2 tbsp tamarind, taste for seasoning, then add the kale, stirring for a couple of minutes until softened. Divide the squash between bowls, ladle in the curry sauce, then top with the coriander and coconut flakes, if using. Serve with warmed flatbreads.

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