This curry is on dinnertime repeat at my house this month: it’s packed with nourishing herbs, spices and veggies, and bursting with my favorite fall flavors.

When this season rolls around, I start craving all the soups, curries, and chilis at the first drop in temperature. I’ve evolved this tasty coconut chicken curry recipe over time to fit whatever seasonal veggies are in my fridge at the moment. Plus, it’s beginner friendly if you’re new to making curry — aside from the protein, it all comes together in just one pot. Let’s dig in.

This dish is inspired by traditional Thai yellow curries, with a kick of Indian flavor. It’s loaded with aromatics that will leave your kitchen smelling divine, and uses yellow curry paste, which contains a combination of spices that have been used in Thai and Indian kitchens for centuries. The most well-known spice is turmeric, known for it’s anti-inflammatory properties and vibrant, golden color. Traditional curries often utilize real chilis for spice, but this recipe uses chili powder to bring the heat.

Lemongrass is another popular ingredient in Southeast-Asian cooking, and adds a zesty kick that perfectly balances the other flavors in the dish (to make it easier on yourself, you can buy pre-ground lemongrass from many groceries.) The coconut milk provides a welcome cooling touch to this dish; I opt for canned full-fat coconut milk for the richest, creamiest flavor. When it comes to spices, feel free to adjust to your liking. I would say this recipe is moderately spicy as-is.

By October, I’ve usually already made my fair share of sweet potato dishes, but they’re still one of my favorite ingredients no matter the season. When cooked in this curry, they take on a soft, satisfying texture, and their natural sweetness pairs perfectly with the spices in this dish. Plus, sweet potatoes are high in fiber (among boasting numerous other health benefits.)

As for the other veggies, feel free to riff on my version using what you’ve got. In addition to the sweet potato, I used a combo of carrots, broccoli and green peas. I’ve also used cauliflower and mushrooms, and am planning to test with squash next. For protein, I added two shredded chicken breasts, which were ideal for soaking up the bold, warming flavors of the curry sauce.

This dish is all about the finishing touches, so don’t skimp on the herbs! IMHO, they make this dish, and I love to use a generous mix of cilantro, mint and basil that brings freshness to every bite.

When it’s almost ready, I’ll squeeze a lime and add some additional herbs to garnish. As with most comfort foods, this curry is best enjoyed with some carbs. I used a combination of jasmine and cauliflower rice, but rice noodles are also a delicious option to soak up every bit of the sauce. This recipe serves around six people, so it’s usually enough for the whole family, or a great make-ahead meal to have throughout the week. I hope you enjoy this warm, comforting curry as much as my crew did!

Coconut Curry with Sweet Potato, Lemongrass & Chicken

Serves 6

Cozy Coconut Curry with Sweet Potato, Lemongrass & Chicken

By Michelle Nash
Prep

20 minutes

Cook

35 minutes


Ingredients

2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 and 1/2 cans of unsweetened coconut milk

1 cup of vegetable broth

3 Tbsp yellow curry paste

2 Tbsp chili powder

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 onion, chopped

6 garlic cloves, minced

2 Tbsp ginger, minced

2 lemongrass stalks, very thinly sliced

1 Tbsp fish sauce

1 Tbsp lime juice

2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, shredded

1 large sweet potato, cut into 3/4" cubes

1 heaping cup chopped broccoli

1/2 cup green peas

1/2 cup carrots, cut into 1/4" thick coins

1 scallion, green parts thinly sliced

handfuls of fresh basil, cilantro and/or mint

For serving: 

salt and pepper

lime wedges

steamed rice, cauliflower rice or rice noodles


Instructions

  1. Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil and onion and cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add in garlic, ginger, lemongrass and stir frequently, about 4 minutes. Reduce heat if necessary to prevent over-cooking.
  3. Add the curry paste, chili powder and cayenne and sauté until the spices are fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Add in the chopped vegetables and cook for 5-10 minutes over medium heat until they begin to soften.
  5. Add in the broth and coconut milk and bring to a simmer.
  6. Bring a separate pot filled with 8 cups of water to a boil. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 10 minutes. Remove chicken and shred with a fork.
  7. Add the shredded chicken and fresh herbs to the curry and gently simmer for 10-15 minutes. Be careful not to boil.
  8. Add fish sauce and lime juice to taste.
  9. Top with chopped scallions, more herbs and serve with lime wedges and rice.
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