Today’s Healthy Eating Workshop was inspired by my travels through Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia. The students had a chance to make a Massaman Curry, and what people are saying is the best curry in Noosa!
So whats so good about it?
Curry’s are often full of enzyme rich vegetables that aid the cleansing process. The vegetables have minimal cooking times, so they are still bursting with colour, flavour and nutrients.
In Ayurvedic medicine, ginger and galangal is great for stimulating your circulation and metabolic rate. Ginger improves gastric mobility – When the digestive system is functioning at its best, food is freely moving through the body, which reduces bloating and constipation. In fact, studies have found that ginger regulates peristalsis, the rippling movement of the muscles in the gastrointestinal tract that is needed to push food and waste through the digestive system. Since it actually helps regulate peristalsis, it also helps to tone and strengthen the muscles involved in digestion.
Capsaicin is the substance contained in chillies that can help with weight control. It suppresses the appetite, raises metabolic rate, stimulates thermogenesis (creation of heat in the body) therefore burning more calories and slowing down spikes in blood sugar. Lemongrass can help improve digestion and stimulate the lymphatic system for improved drainage. Green vegetables are packed with folate for a energy metabolism.
120 grams (4 1/4 oz) of Massaman Curry Paste (see below for recipe)
200 ml coconut Milk
250 ml strained pumpkin seed pumpkin seed milk (you can also use other milks such as almond, rice + soy)
400 ml vegetable stock
640 g roasted pumpkin – divided into 2 (see notes)
1 diced onion
40 grams oven roasted cashew nuts, chopped
600 g of protein, cut into chunks (choose from chicken breast, prawns, organic tofu or tempeh, white fish) or alternatively just add more protein rich vegetables sources such as cooked lentils, green peas and mung bean.
6 – 8 tablespoons tamarind juice
3 – 4 tablespoons tamari soy sauce – or to taste
1 – 2 teaspoons honey (optional)
A good grind of black pepper
Puree 320 g of the roasted pumpkin until smooth.
Fry curry paste with oil to release the flavours, diced onion and stir fry for 2 minutes, add seed milk, vegetable stock, and pumpkin puree.
Simmer for about 10 minutes over a low heat until the mixture combines and starts to develop in flavor and consistency. The pumpkin puree helps to thicken the sauce.
Add half the required amount of additional seasonings and mix through.
Taste the sauce and adjust to your taste – adding more seasoning if necessary.
Add your choice of protein. Cook for 5-6 minutes, then add the coconut cream.
Add the rest of the roasted pumpkin chunks to warm through if needed , making sure to be gentle whilst stirring to avoid breaking up the pumpkin.If your pumpkin is just out of the oven, you will not need to warm it, so just arrange into the bowls before serving.
Serve in bowls and divide the roasted pumpkin between the bowls.
Top with roasted cashew nuts and garnish with fresh garden herbs such as thai basil, spring onion or coriander.
Serve with a light drizzle of coconut cream.
Roasted sweet potato can be used in place of pumpkin.
For best results it’s important to use the correct Massaman Curry Paste which is the recipe below.
Massaman Curry Paste Recipe from Kamalaya
20 g red dry chili, seeds removed (7 – 8 pieces)
20 g Garlic (6 cloves)
50 g (1 Shallot)
10 g – 1 stalk, white part only, lemongrass
10 g – 2 teaspoons, cardamom
25 ml – 2 tablespoons, cold pressed coconut, olive or macadamia nut oil
1 g – 2 pieces cloves pods
Chop the chili, garlic, shallot and lemongrass.
Smash the cardamom pods and cloves.
Combine all the ingredients into a good high speed blender like a Vitamix or alternatively smash together in a mortar and pestle until mixed through.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
This makes enough paste to serve 4 people.