Have you ever seen anyone walk face first into a closed glass patio door? Well my relatives have (yup!) and the utter look of shock on said victims face (me!), is probably as close as I can get to explaining the way we felt as we stepped off the flight back in Seattle. Having enjoyed a week of sheer sunny bliss in Puerto Vallarta, sprawled out like starfish on our cabana by day and gorging on Mexican food and Margaritas by night, the cold, wet and grey skies of Seattle were a less than desirable welcome home.
Not wanting to brave the cold and rain – what’s the point in venturing out if you have to cover up your fabulous tan anyway? – we agreed that we would not be leaving the comforting confines of our home that day. Just five minutes later however, we realised that we would need some kind of sustenance during the day.
Stood in front of our open kitchen cupboards, scratching our heads in bewilderment, both determined to be the first to come up with a clever solution. My husband excitedly broke the silence “why don’t we use the canned pumpkin as a base for a curry sauce and throw it in the slow cooker?” – darn it! His idea was not only the first to the post, but obviously the closest to genius either of us were ever going to get with our vacation numbed brains.
In fact, Einstein himself would be proud of our resulting Spicy Pumpkin Crock Pot Curry. The sauce is really the headliner of this story. Using canned pumpkin as the base for the sauce is impossibly healthy and the addition of the coconut milk creates the creamiest and most delicious-iest (is that a word, because it should be?) curry sauce we have ever eaten. Using lite coconut milk also helps to keep this curry within the domains of “healthy” and the limitations of my post-holiday “diet” – which starts immediately, or at least after we’ve finished that open packet of biscuits, or perhaps first thing in the morning…
Simply add some fragrant spice, a splash of fresh lime, and a handful of fresh coriander and you’ll have arrived at your destination, the pearly gates of curry heaven. We poured our sauce over chicken, potato, aubergine and other veg, which tasted fantastic, but this curry would taste equally great as a vegetarian curry, or any other mixture. Use with beef, with added pieces of pumpkin, or even as an eggplant curry – the eggplant was definitely our fave element!
This really is an effortless dish, leaving all the hard work to Mr Crock Pot. Simply prep and chop your choice of protein and/or vegetables and place them in the slow cooker, reserving a few coriander/cilantro leaves for the garnish.
Toss all of the ingredients for the Pumpkin Curry Sauce into a medium mixing bowl and stir to combine.
Pour the pumpkin curry sauce over the chicken and veg and stir to mix thoroughly.
Turn your slow cooker on to the low heat setting for 8 hours, or on high for 4 hours for quicker results. Then light the fire – or in my case, turn up the heating, but that doesn’t sound anywhere near as romantic – sit back, relax and revel in the wonderful aromas flowing out from your magical Crock Pot.
Serve your delicious curry with some hot steamed rice, an extra drizzle of Sriracha (if you like it hot!) and a garnish of fresh coriander/cilantro leaves – my goodness, you really are a kitchen god/goddess of the highest kind!
Spicy Pumpkin Crock Pot Curry
For the Pumpkin Curry Sauce:
1 15oz Can Pumpkin Puree
1 Cup of Canned Lite Coconut Milk
2 Tsp Curry Powder
1 Tsp Ground Tumeric
1 Tsp Ground Cumin
½ Tsp Ground Coriander
½ Tsp Nutmeg
2 Tsp Red Chili Flakes
2 Tsp Sriracha Chili Sauce
Juice of 2 Limes
Handful of Fresh Coriander/Cilantro
For the Curry:
1-2 Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 Medium Aubergine/Eggplant
1 Medium Potato
½lb Green Beans
1 Yellow Onion
1 Red Bell Pepper
½lb Green Beans
Sriracha Sauce (Optional)
Coriander/Cilantro Garnish (Optional)
Chop the chicken breasts into small pieces and place in slow cooker.
Prep and chop all of the vegetables and place in slow cooker, reserving a few coriander/cilantro leaves for the garnish.
Add all ingredients for the Pumpkin Curry Sauce into a medium mixing bowl and combine.
Pour the sauce over the chicken and vegetables and stir to mix thoroughly.
Cook on low heat setting for 8 hours, or on high for 4 hours.
Serve with steamed rice and garnish with a drizzle of Sriracha sauce and fresh coriander/cilantro leaves.