Vegetable coconut curry (#64)

I am not one of those people who will willingly submit oneself to a meal without meat if I did not have good cause to do so. This one is a bit of a winner. Yes, the ingredients list looks pretty chunky, but what it does is partially build up a range of flavours but also gives this dish a series of subtly different textures. It’s what this one a must have for your repertoire.

A big thank you I must say to the Hairy Bikers, whose Great Curries book I owe a debt of gratitude.

Give yourself just under an hour for hour for this one. I think this has to be one I serve for dinner if there’s a veggie or three in the group. I imagine, with the coconut milk, that this recipe must surely be vegan as well?

Good things: a sublimely tasty curry with a range of subtly different textures

Bad things: you might not want to buy half the veg aisle, but you should!

Ingredients & requirements: serves 4 hungry people, or 6 children

  • 300g       aubergine
  • 200g       small button mushrooms
  • 6 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 2              large onions
  • 4              garlic
  • 25g         ginger
  • 500g       sweet potatoes
  • 1 tbsp   garam masala
  • 1 tsp      ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp      cumin seeds
  • 15           curry leaves
  • 3              green chillies
  • 300ml    veg stock
  • 150ml    coconut milk
  • 400g       chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tsp      caster
  • 300g       cauliflower
  • 150g       frozen peas
  • coriander for serving
  • I served with 300g of rice.


  1. Prepare 300ml of veg stock
  2. Set aside the following together:
    1. Cut the aubergine into 2cm chunks
    2. Slice the 200g of button mushrooms in two if they’re large-ish.
  3. Set aside together:
    1. Peel and Slice 2 large onions
    2. Peel and finely chop 4 garlic cloves
    3. Finely chop a 25g chunk of fresh ginger
  4. Peel the sweet potato ad cut into 2cm chunks, and split 3 green chilies length ways
  5. Set aside in a small bowl together:
    1. 1 tbsp garam masala
    2. 1 tsp ground turmeric
    3. 1 tsp cumin seeds
    4. 15 curry leaves
  6. Separate 300g of cauliflower (around half a cauliflower) into small florets, set aside.
  7. Set aside 150g frozen peas.


  1. In a large pan heat 3 tablespoons of oil and stir fry the aubergine & mushrooms for 4-5 mins until lightly browned. Tip into a heatproof bowl and set aside.
  2. Add another 3 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Fry the onions, garlic and Ginger over a low heat for 10 mins until softened by not coloured.
  3. Near the end of this stage put the rice on. Put 300g of rice in a large saucepan, add around 750ml of boiling water. Clamp the lid on and cook for around 15-20 mins on the lowest heat you have, before turning it off to let it sit until you’re ready to eat.
  4. Now stir in the spices to onion mix and stir constantly for 2 mins.
  5. Tip in the aubergine, mushrooms, sweet potatoes and chillies. Cook for 3 mins, stir regularly.
  6. Stir in the following, put the lid on and bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 5 mins:
    1. 300ml veg stock
    2. 150ml coconut milk (shake the tin before emptying it out!)
    3. 400g chopped tomatoes
    4. 2 teaspoons of caster
  1. Add the cauliflower, make sure well covered by liquid, put the lid back on cook for 10 minds more. Stir once or twice.
  2. Add the 150g of frozen peas. Cook uncovered for 5-10 mins. Stir occasionally.
  3. Season with salt & pepper. Serve with some chopped coriander.


Despite the three green chilies (which I picked out at the very end), I don’t think it is in anyway prohibitively hot. I should probably check this with my work bae Faye, who cannot abide any spice. Especially as Priya described this as having a “good level of heat” which suggests something out of range of some. I’ll return with an answer.

This is also the first time I’ve cooked a aubergine and liked it. I consider that an astounding achievement on the part of this curry and the Hairy Bikers.



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