Pork and Pumpkin Thai Yellow Curry
This creamy, Thai pork and pumpkin curry recipe bring all the warm comforting flavours of autumn and winter into one easy meal, perfect for any weeknight dinner. Although pumpkins and squash peaks during the winter months, it is still readily available to buy all year round. I find the sweet flavours of pumpkin is delicious in the summer months too, making a hot curry not so hot - as well as pumpkin being a popular ingredient for Thai desserts!
Whenever I cook with pumpkin, I like to cook with kabocha which is a Japanese pumpkin. Kabocha has dark green skin with lighter green streaks with the flesh that has the familiar colour and sweetness to pumpkin. The rind is edible but it can also be peeled if desired, but in Thai desserts, it is more often kept on.
Peeling a raw pumpkin can be a lot of work, especially if you have never done it before. Unlike butternut squash, you can’t peel pumpkin with a peeler, so you will need a sharp knife. The easiest way to peel a pumpkin is to cut it in half to remove all the seeds and stringy bits inside. Then use a sharp knife and carefully, yet firmly, cut the outer rind of the pumpkin. You don’t have to cut pieces off in one long piece, cutting in smaller pieces is okay too - this also keeps the round shape too!
How to Cook Thai Pork and Pumpkin Curry
This recipe is fairly simple and preparing the pumpkin is the hardest part but easily done. When prepping the pumpkin, we are going to peel it with a sharp knife and roughly chop it into bitesize chunks. The other ingredient we need to prepare is the pork, I’m choosing to cook with pork fillet today but you can cook with other cuts such as loins and pork chops. When prepping the pork, we are going to slice it on the diagonal into thin slices.
Now all the preparation is done, pour about a tablespoon of oil in a wok and heat to a medium to high temperature. Stir fry the Thai yellow curry paste for at least 2 minutes to break done the paste and build a beautiful aroma. Without shaking the coconut milk can, take a spoon and scoop out the top thicker layer of coconut cream and add into the wok. Blend the coconut cream and loose curry paste together before seasoning with fish sauce. Normally, we would also season with palm sugar at this stage too but the pumpkin will bring in this sweetness, so no additional sugar is needed!
Bring the sauce to a light boil and simmer for at least 5 minutes to allow the time for the oils to be released and rise to the surface. This oil is really important to achieve a beautiful and bold colour at the end. After 5 or so minutes, add the remaining contents of coconut milk with 100ml of water and the pumpkin chunks and simmer for 7-10 minutes before adding the pork slices. Roughly tear 3 or 4 kaffir lime leaves and add to the curry, simmer for an additional 10 minutes, make sure all the pumpkin chunks are tender before removing the wok from the heat. And that’s it - all finished! Time to enjoy your meal with freshly steamed Thai jasmine rice or noodles.
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