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Ingredients:
1½ tbsp coconut or sunflower oil
10 fresh curry leaves (optional)
1 onion, finely chopped
5cm piece of root ginger, peeled and finely grated
5 cloves garlic, crushed
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1½ tbsp mild curry powder
½ tsp chilli powder (optional)
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
16 cherry tomatoes, halved
2 x 400ml cans full-fat coconut milk
2 carrots, thinly sliced
1 green pepper, deseeded and cut into bite-sized chunks
200g skinless and boneless cod or sea bass fillets, cut into bitesized pieces (optional)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 spring onion, finely sliced, to serve
Cooked brown rice, to serve

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Sri Lankan Vegetable Curry with Brown Rice

SERVES: 4 - 6

Many moons ago, before Rex and Honey came along, Jesse and I went on a far-flung adventure to Sri Lanka. It is such a vibrant country where the people smile from the heart and the food is made with love. On the entire trip, there wasn’t a dish I didn’t love. This curry is inspired by the flavours we encountered and the warmth their food provides. I love adding fish to this curry as it adds an extra boost of protein and makes it even more hearty.

Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the curry leaves (if using) and fry for 2–3 minutes until the leaves begin to crisp up and brown. Add the onion and ginger and sauté gently for 5 minutes, until the onion has softened, then add the garlic and fry for a further minute until aromatic. Add the spices, tomatoes, half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Fry for a further 2 minutes until aromatic, then add the coconut milk, carrots and green pepper. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for 20–25 minutes until the vegetables are cooked through and the sauce has reduced down a little. If you are using fish, add it to the curry for the last 5 minutes of cooking time, until just cooked through.

Serve with the spring onion scattered over the top and rice alongside.