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Red Vegetable Curry

This dish has its roots in Thailand where red curry is a national favourite, but the vegetables come from any British garden or greengrocer. It's very easy to make - just bung the lot in and leave it to bubble for less than half an hour. It's cheap to make and very filling, not to mention nutritious.


  • 400ml/14¼fl oz tin coconut milk

  • 100ml/3½fl oz stock

  • 100g/3½oz cooked French beans

  • 100g/3½oz marrow

  • 100g/3½oz cooked sweet potatoes

  • 100g/3½oz pumpkin

  • 100g/3½oz courgettes

  • 1 bunch of spring onions, finely chopped

  • For the curry paste

  • 10 black peppercorns

  • 2 tsp cumin seeds

  • 2 tsp coriander seeds

  • 10 red chillies

  • 5 shallots

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed

  • 1 2cm/½in piece of fresh ginger

  • 6 stalks of lemon grass

  • 1 lime, zest only

  • pinch of ground cinnamon

  • ½ tsp turmeric

  • splash vegetable oil

  • splash chilli oil

  • 1 tbsp sugar

  • salt

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil, for frying

  • To serve

  • basmati rice, cooked

  • fresh coriander

  • small dome-shaped bowl

  • lime wedges

  • 1 red chilli, finely sliced


  • 1.

    To make the curry paste, dry-fry the peppercorns, cumin and coriander seeds until fragrant, then grind them in a mortar and pestle.

  • 2.

    Put them with all the other paste ingredients, except the oil, into a food processor and blend until smooth (it takes a good 5-10 minutes).

  • 3.

    Warm the oil in a pan and add four good spoonfuls of paste (one per person).

  • 4.

    Cook on a low heat until it becomes fragrant.

  • 5.

    Turn up the heat to high, add the coconut milk and stock and bring to the boil.

  • 6.

    Boil for three minutes.

  • 7.

    Add the French beans, marrow, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, courgettes and spring onions and simmer for about four minutes.

  • 8.

    While the curry is simmering, drain the rice. Chop some coriander and stir through the rice, then pack into a small dome-shaped bowl. Turn the bowl upside down and remove to reveal a dome-shaped mound of rice. Garnish with finely sliced chilli and a sprig of coriander.

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