Thai Pumpkin Curry with Citrus Notes (Vegan/Gluten-Free)

Thai pumpkin curry with red rice
Charles C. Place / Getty Images
  • 30 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: Serves 4
Ratings (9)

This vegetarian curry offers an array of bright colors - orange, yellow, and red - infused with citrus accents. You'll love the delicious taste of this curry, as well as its healthy combination of vegetables, including pumpkin or squash, yam/sweet potato, carrots, yellow bell pepper, and cherry tomatoes. Add chickpeas as a protein source, then finish the dish with a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds and nasturtium flowers for a gourmet curry recipe that's as beautiful as it is delicious. Makes a perfect vegetarian Thanksgiving recipe, but is equally yummy any time of the year. ENJOY!

What You'll Need

  • 1/2 small pumpkin (or substitute 1 acorn squash, butternut, or any other orange squash except spaghetti)
  • 1 small yam (or 1/2 large yam or sweet potato, peeled and cubed)
  • 1 to 2 medium carrots (cut into thick slices)
  • 1 yellow bell pepper (cut into bite-size pieces)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 can chick peas (drained)
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest
  • For the Curry Sauce:
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 to 2 red chilies (or substitute fresh green chilies, or 1 to 2 teaspoons Thai chili sauce)
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon tamarind paste (or substitute 1 tablespoon lime juice)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce (use wheat-free soy sauce for gluten-free diets)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoons lime juice (from 1/2 lime)
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice (fresh)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoons rice vinegar (or substitute apple cider vinegar)
  • 1 tablespoons coriander seeds (ground)
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1/3 purple onion (sliced)
  • Garnish: a handful of fresh basil leaves
  • Garnish: 1 tablespoon roasted pumpkin seeds and a few nasturtium flowers (or other edible flowers)

How to Make It

  1. To make the curry sauce, place all sauce ingredients together in a food processor (or blender if you don't have a processor). Process well. Set aside.
  2. Prepare pumpkin or squash by cutting it open and scooping out the seeds with a spoon. Either save the seeds for roasting or discard. Cut the pumpkin/squash into cubes, slicing off the skin. You will probably only use 1/3 to 1/2 a pumpkin for this recipe (save the rest in the refrigerator for cooking later).
  1. Prepare the rest of the vegetables plus the orange rind.
  2. Place the pumpkin (or squash), yam, and carrots in the wok/frying pan together with the curry sauce over medium-high heat. Stir well.
  3. When the curry begins to boil, reduce heat to medium, stirring occasionally. Allow to simmer for 6-8 minutes, or until vegetables have softened.
  4. Add the bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, chickpeas, and orange rind, stirring to incorporate. Simmer for 2 more minutes.
  5. Do a taste test for salt and spice. If not salty enough, add a little more soy sauce. If not spicy enough for your taste, add more fresh chili (or chili sauce). If too sour, add a little more sugar.
  6. To serve, scoop into a large serving bowl, or portion out on individual plates. Sprinkle with fresh basil leaves and pumpkin seeds, then top with several nasturtium flowers (if using). Serve with plenty of Thai jasmine rice, and enjoy this colorful and fragrant Thai dish!