Jackfruit Thai Massaman Curry
There’s nothing more comforting than a delicious bowl of Massaman curry. Massaman curry is usually made with meat, typically beef or chicken, but it is very possible to make it completely vegan and just as tasty. The flavours are warm, sweet, tangy and spicy - if you add some fresh red chillies too.
Thai massaman curry paste is sauteed with coconut cream for the base, jackfruit chunks add chewy meatiness, lots of vegetables are added too and then all of it is drowned in a flavourful peanut-coconut sauce. Delicious - you will be left wanting more!
You can use all kinds of vegetable combinations in your vegan Massaman curry, cooking with potatoes and onions will keep this dish fairly traditional. You would normally find white potatoes in a Massaman curry but I opted for sweet potato for this dish which helps to give the curry a richer overall colour. As sweet potatoes are already sweet, I personally prefer not to add any palm sugar, but please do season to your own preferences.
Raw jackfruit, with its chewy texture, emulates meat beautifully in vegetarian/vegan dishes. It really is a great meat alternative if you are tired of cooking tofu. You can buy jackfruit fresh or already cooked in cans - which is what I use as raw jackfruit can be hard to find in the UK. If you would like to learn more about jackfruit and how to cook from its raw state, you would love our blog ‘Get to Know: Jackfruit’.
How to Cook Jackfruit Massaman Curry
From an unshaken can of full-fat coconut milk, scoop out the thick creamy layer of the coconut milk into a wok and gently heat. The thick creamy layer should be at least a third of the can, if you find that your coconut milk does not have a thick and creamy layer, it is worth changing brands as good quality coconut milk will have a natural harder layer on top when it is stored at room temperature. My favourite brand is Aroy-D, which you can purchase online or in most Asian shops.
Once the coconut milk is on a gentle heat, stir fry the Mae Jum Thai Massaman curry paste. Bring to a light boil and simmer for a few minutes to let all the natural oils rise to the surface. Add the remaining coconut milk to the wok with water, sweet potatoes and onions and then simmer with a lid for 10 minutes.
After some time, check to see if the potatoes are almost cooked before adding in the remaining vegetables, in our case this would be jackfruit, cauliflower, aubergines and peanuts. Allow the curry to simmer until all the vegetables are cooked fully. If you prefer the sauce to be thinner, you can add water and cover with a lid, if you prefer the sauce to be thicker, continue to simmer if your sauce has reduced.
Lastly, season the curry to taste. Add a couple of tablespoons of light soya sauce with a tablespoon of tamarind puree and salt. You can add palm sugar for extra sweetness but I find the sweet potatoes already sweet enough for me! And now you are done, serve up a generous bowl of massaman curry and garnish with fresh coriander and crushed peanuts! Mmm, delicious!
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