Lets give good old pumpkin a glamorous makeover today with Thai style Red Pumpkin Curry! In most homes this delicious vegetable ends up being used in a couple of recipes that everybody finally gets tired of eating. My mom always made a Punjabi style tomato onion based pumpkin curry with it or if we had surplus pumpkin then a halwa as well. As delicious as those were always, I got tired of these two predictable dishes. I don’t really like predictability in the kitchen!

In the early days of my blog, I explored cooking Thai food at home. Back then it was quite challenging to find some of the essential ingredients used in making Thai green and red curry pastes. The ready to use pastes were not that easily available in Lahore either. So I experimented with creating the closest to authentic flavours by making Thai Green Curry Paste and Thai Red Curry Paste at home, from scratch, using available substitutes.

In past five years, Thai food has become very popular very fast in Lahore. Maybe because the flavour profile is very close to our own tastebuds. The basic ingredients as well as ready to use pastes are more easily available in bigger grocery stores. Still in many areas in Lahore and definitely in smaller cities it would be near impossible to find these items.

That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy this deliciously creamy, fragrant and luscious Thai Red Pumpkin Curry! Even I still prefer to use the fresh pastes that I created years ago with locally available stuff. Making fresh paste would make this Thai Red Pumpkin Curry so much more flavorful and aromatic than the store bought version.

If you decide to go the easier way with ready to use curry paste, even then do remember add some fresh ginger, lemon leaves or lemon rind to give your curry that irresistible kick which is essentially Thai.

3 cups pumpkin flesh cut into bite sized cubes
Thai red curry paste, 4-5 tablespoons ( homemade or store bought)
Basil or coriander leaves
2 tablespoons coconut or sunflower oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 inch piece ginger, grated
1+1/2 cup coconut milk
1 cup vegetable stock

For Homemade Thai Red Curry Paste :

1 teaspoon red chilli powder
4-5 red chillies
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoon tomato purรฉe or tomato ketchup
3 cloves garlic
1 big thumb of ginger, almost 1 inch or 1 teaspoon galangal
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons coconut milk
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 stalk lemon grass or zest of 1 lemon
Salt to taste

Toast cumin and coriander till aromatic.
Just add all the ingredients to food processor and whiz till you have a smooth paste. If its too thick, add a little more coconut milk.

This Is What You Do:
Easy way to cut a pumkin:
Cut a smallish pumpkin in half. Wrap in foil sheet. Place in a preheated oven (180 degrees C) for 30 minutes.

When cool enough to handle. Slice away skin, remove seeds and pith. Easily cut already soft flesh into bite sized cubes.

Heat oil in a pan, add onion, garlic and ginger. Stir fry for 2-3 minutes.

Add red curry paste. Sautรฉ till it is darker in colour.

Add pumpkin cubes and stir fry. If using cooked Pumpkin, it will only take a couple of minutes. If using uncooked pumpkin, it will take longer and you shall have to add more vegetable stock or water.

Add coconut milk and basil or lemon leaves. Let simmer for 10 minutes on medium low heat. Add a little stock or water if it gets too thick.

Check for the balance of salty, sour and spicy according to your taste.
Serve hot over steamed rice.

Serves 4

40 Replies to “Thai Red Pumpkin Curry”

  1. Just what I need thanks you solved my issue of a huge box of chopped pumpkin that needs to be finished. Love the fact you have given substitutes for the Thai ingredients.

    1. Aroma is the biggest plus for me in Thai cuisine, Seema! Wakes up even the most dormant of appetites. โ˜บ

  2. I love Thai cuisine .This Thai red pumpkin curry looks delish. Would love to have it steaming hot rice. Fab share Maria.

  3. Delicious share maria !!! just some steamed rice and this curry, all finished up within fem minutes ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Thai veg curries are my favorite, they are so subtle and delicious. I love your idea of peeling pumpkin and will try next time for sure as it is a pain to cut the pumpkin.

  5. I love to include pumpkin in my dish…this looks amazing..and thank you for sharing the tip to cut pumpkin easily.. most of the time I end cutting my hand๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. I used to go through the same dilemma, Lathiya! Had almost stopped cooking pumpkin for fear of getting hurt. ๐Ÿ˜Š But I love it so much that I had to find a way out.

  6. That’s true Maria, normally pumpkin is used to make sabzi and halwa in Punjabi homes. You have given a
    delicious alternative to regular pumpkin dishes.

    1. Thank you, Ritu! Though I love sabzi and halwa but got really tired of cooking pumpkin just those two ways.

    1. Honestly, I wasn’t sure how the pumpkin would go witj Thai spices and coconut milk but in my imagination I had a real good feel about it. Turned out, I was right! ๐Ÿ˜„

  7. Thai food is one of my top favourite cuisines and I love pumpkin…Both of them in one go…can’t ask for more….drooling over the curry…Just need a bowl of rice to finish off…Lovely share!!

    1. Thank you, Padma! Thai food checks all the right boxes for me too – a perfect balance of all flavours, comforting and healthy. ๐Ÿ˜Š

  8. The curry looks so delicious and creamy. I would eat anything with Coconut Milk and if it is a Thai Red Curry even better. I love the aromatics used in the Thai cooking.

    1. Then you are a girl after my own heart, Aruna! I love everything coconut too – soups, stews and desserts. ๐Ÿ˜Š

  9. I love pumpkin. And this red pumpkin curry looks delish. Thanks for the red Thai paste recipe. Bookmarked it.

    1. I’m glad you like the idea of making the paste at home from scratch, Sujata. Homemade is so much more flavoursome than the storebought one.

  10. Love Thai cuisine and this Thai pumpkin curry looks so flavourful and yum๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿป

    1. Me too, Soma! Especially the fragrance of herbs and galangal simmering in coconut milk. ๐Ÿ˜Š

  11. Such an alluring Thai curry, the addition of pumpkin makes this curry more interesting and pleasing. Wish i get a bowl to enjoy with some rice.

    1. Thank you, Priya! Pumpkin makes it more summery actually. Besides one more thing to do with the pumpkin when you end up buying a huge one. ๐Ÿ˜Š

  12. Wah I love pumpkin and Thai curries too, and both are in one dish very interesting recipe..Itโ€™s on my to do list now, thanks for sharing this Thai style pumpkin curry ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

    1. Thank you, Shobha! And so aromatic too! I get hungry as soon as the herbs and spices start simmering I’m coconut milk. ๐Ÿ˜Š

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