Log In | Enquiry

Home / Recipes / Keralan-style curry with pumpkin & lentils

Keralan-style curry with pumpkin & lentils

Keralan style pumpkin and lentil curry

Prep 20 mins / Cook 35-45 mins


  1. 2 red chillies
  2. 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  3. 3cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  4. 2 tablespoons groundnut oil
  5. 1 teaspoon mustard seeds (HE186)
  6. 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (HE175)
  7. Pinch asafoetida (HE330)
  8. 2 onions, finely chopped
  9. 1 teaspoon sea salt (LJ031)
  10. 650g pumpkin or winter squash, peeled, deseeded and chopped into roughly 2cm cubes
  11. 300g red lentils (PU294)
  12. 1 teaspoon ground cumin (HE376)
  13. 1 teaspoon turmeric (HE170)
  14. 400ml can organic chopped tomatoes (LJ080)
  15. 400ml can organic coconut milk (LJ350)
  16. 10 dried curry leaves (HE333)
  17. 1 teaspoon garam masala (HE180)

To serve

  1. 2 tablespoons fresh coriander, chopped/li>


  1. Chop the chillies roughly (if you prefer your curry mild, remove the seeds first). Place the chopped chilli, with the garlic and ginger, in a food processor or pestle and mortar and grind down to a rough paste. Set to one side.
  2. Heat the groundnut oil over a high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds and cook for 30 seconds, by which time they will have started to brown and give off a lovely aroma. Add the asafoetida and stir, then add the onions. Reduce the heat and stir until the onions have become soft and translucent.
  3. Add the garlic, chilli and ginger paste, sea salt, cubed pumpkin, lentils, ground cumin and turmeric. Stir to combine, making sure all the pumpkin and lentils are exposed to the oil.
    Now add the chopped tomatoes, coconut milk, curry leaves and 500ml fresh water. Stir, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer.
  4. Cook for a further 20 minutes, or until the lentils are soft and the pumpkin is just tender. Stir in the garam masala and remove from the heat.
  5. Serve the curry hot, sprinkled with the chopped coriander and accompanied by plain basmati rice.

Recipe & photo from Steve Dent AKA The Circus Gardener’s Kitchen