Pumpkin Coconut Curry with Black Eyed Peas
This creamy pumpkin curry is deliciousness in one-pot, and takes less than 30 minutes to make from scratch! Definitely the kind of warm, comforting and hearty meal you would want to make on a gloomy autumn (fall) evening.
Before the season ends, make this flavourful pumpkin curry that is all sorts of delicious and healthy.
Filled with the richness of coconut milk, hint of sweetness from the pumpkin, earthy texture from black eyed peas and spices to lift up the flavours, this vegan pumpkin curry just fits in right for this season.
It was only two years ago when I moved to Germany, I started liking pumpkin more. Of course, back in India it is very much common too, and mom often used it. We have our traditional south Indian pumpkin dishes that mom always makes.
But, pumpkin curry is not really that common in our families, especially this version with coconut milk.
Sounds surprising? Well yes, not all the Indian curries are made of coconut milk, just in case you thought so. 🙂
Coconut milk in curries is not commonly used in all the states of India. We mostly use fresh grated coconut or dry coconut in the region I come from.
That said, let us talk more about this pumpkin curry, specifically.
Since I now love pumpkin and coconut milk so much, I simply thought of making a delicious creamy curry that is just perfect for this weather.
Being a vegetarian, I always look for additions to make the dish protein-rich. That’s why the black eyed peas.
I simply combined these three main ingredients and played around with some basic Indian spices in my pantry to create this beautifully looking and heavenly delicious curry.
Look at that colour, isn’t it a pretty yellow ? I just can’t stop admiring how beautiful it looks.
Main ingredients used in this Pumpkin Curry
Pumpkin (obviously!)- you can use any variety of pumpkin or also butternut squash. I have used Kabocha pumpkin in this.
Black eyed peas– I soak the dried ones in enough water and cook it using my pressure cooker. Cooking them directly on a stove-top will take a while. You can use canned ones instead. Black eyed peas can be replaced with chickpeas, black beans or any other bean of choice.
This dish is a complete one-pot dish if you are using canned black eyed peas, and takes just 15 minutes to cook.
Coconut Milk– I prefer the full fat version, for how creamy and delicious the curry turns out. You can use low-fat if you wish to.
I always use this brand of coconut milk in my cooking. It is absolutely fresh and creamy.
Spices– ground cumin, ground coriander, garam masala, paprika powder or hot red chilly powder, turmeric powder.
Good quality of spice powders, especially garam masala is what makes this curry what it is. I personally love this brand of garam masala and use it extensively in my Indian cooking.
How to cook pumpkin perfectly?
Pumpkin is one vegetable that gets cooked in a jiffy. If you happen to not keep an eye on these, they tend to get overcooked and end up being mushy.
You totally don’t want mushy pumpkin in your curry.
So to avoid that, chop pumpkin to big cubes. This is your first step.
Secondly, you don’t have to cook it first and then add the coconut milk. Because, we will be simmering the mixture for at least 20 minutes after adding the milk, so this is good enough.
You can directly cook the pumpkin cubes in coconut milk. But then, you will either need a little more coconut milk than what I have mentioned here or just some water.
I personally don’t like too much coconut milk, as I find it a bit too heavy for me. So, I usually add some water to thin it down and then cook the pumpkin.
Mistakes to avoid while making pumpkin curry
First of all, choose a cooking pot or a deep bottom skillet. You don’t want your curry to splutter all over.
I use this cast iron skillet extensively in my cooking. It is extremely helpful and the best choice in terms of health too.
Before adding in the coconut milk, reduce the heat to low. And then, proceed to simmer the curry in low heat. This is super important to avoid coconut milk from curdling. Do not be tempted to increase the heat to high.
Lastly, do not keep stirring the curry often, as the pumpkin cubes are so tender and soft, they break down to smaller pieces.
(I totally made this mistake, and ended up with smaller pieces, so don’t be like me:))
So, with all that said, let us move on the recipe now!
I hope you give this recipe a try and enjoy it as much as I enjoyed preparing it and writing it down for you all.
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Some more curry recipes you might want to try
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Note: 1 cup= 240ml
- 1 tsp coconut oil - , or any other oil of choice
- 2 cups diced pumpkin cubes - or butternut squash
- 2 cups black eyed peas - cooked or canned
- 1.5 cups coconut milk - , full fat
- 1 medium size tomato - , finely chopped
- 1 medium size onion - , finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic - , finely chopped
- 1 tsp coriander powder - (ground coriander)
- 1 tsp cumin powder - (ground cumin)
- 1 tsp paprika powder - (or hot red chilly powder)
- 0.5 or 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 3 tbsp coriander leaves - , finely chopped
- a handful roasted peanuts - , optional
- 1/2 a lemon - , optional
- If you are using dried black eyed peas, soak 1 cup of it in enough water for 6 to 7 hours. Then, drain and cook the soaked peas in 2 cups water for 4 whistles in a pressure cooker.
- In a cooking pot or a skillet, heat coconut oil. Next, add in the chopped garlic cloves and let them turn golden brown in colour.
- Next, add in the chopped onion, saute until it turns soft. Proceed next with the chopped tomato and saute until it is cooked but not mushy.
- Add in the spices- turmeric powder, paprika powder, cumin powder, coriander powder. Saute well adding a tbsp water if required. Let the spices cook well for about 3 minutes.
- Next add in the pumpkin cubes followed by cooked or canned black eyed peas, mix everything well.Add about half a cup of water and let the pumpkin cook partially, for about 3 minutes.
- Then reduce the heat to low before adding the coconut milk, so that the milk doesn't split.
- Now add the coconut milk, mix well and simmer the curry in low heat for 10 minutes. Just before switching off, add the garam masala, mix everything once.
- Switch off the heat, add the chopped coriander leaves, roasted peanuts if you are using. Additionally, you can squeeze in half a lemon.
- Serve the curry with rice or flatbread.
- You can use any variety of pumpkin, I have used Kabocha pumpkin (Japanese pumpkin).
- Alter the spices as per your choice. You can simply use a curry powder and paprika powder and skip the other Indian spices.
- Adjust the quantity of spices according to your taste.
- You can alter the consistency of the curry. Please note the curry gets thick as it cools down.
- I prefer adding full fat coconut milk for a creamy curry, you can use low fat coconut milk instead.
- If you want to serve this as a side dish with chapathi or any other flatbread, use 1 cup coconut milk and simmer for a little longer, so that it gets thick.