Pumpkin, Pea and Spinach Curry

by James Bacon

I have put it to use in this beautiful vegan curry, great for cosy gatherings at this time of year and something everyone will enjoy. It’s not just it’s orange and green appearance that is so perfect for the Halloween season, the dish is rich with coconut milk and kept fresh with the addition of peas and spinach, simply delicious.

Prep: 15-20 min

Cook: 30-40 mins

Difficulty Easy

Serves 4


  • 1kg of peeled pumpkin cut in to cubes
  • 150g fresh/frozen peas (not dried)
  • 100g of fresh spinach (roughly cut)
  • 100g fresh coconut blitzed in a food processor / dessicated coconut (optional)
  • 5 medium banana shallots sliced
  • 5 cloves of garlic (grated or minced)
  • 1 large thumb of ginger (grated/minced) extra for garnish
  • 1 cinnamon stick (roughly 3 inches long)
  • 5 cloves
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 4 cardamom pods (popped)
  • 1tsp cumin seeds
  • 1tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 2 tsp mild curry powder
  • 1tsp ground turmeric
  • 1-2 tsp of chilli powder (depending on how hot you like it and how hot your chilli powder is to begin with. Remember, you can always add more at the end, but you can’t take it out)
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 500ml of passata
  • 1 400g can of coconut milk
  • A coconut milk can of water
  • A large hand full of roughly chopped coriander leaves (reserve some for garnish)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Toasted dried coconut for serving (optional)
  • Coconut yoghurt for dressing (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees, then toss the pumpkin in 1 tbs of oil, a teaspoon of the garam masala and a good few turns of salt and pepper, spread evenly on a baking tray and cook for 20mins or until the edges start to caramelise.
  2. While the pumpkin is cooking add a good glue of vegetable oil to a deep pan. Fry the whole spices (cardamom, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cinnamon, clove, & peppercorns) until fragrant. Add the shallots, cook until very soft and sticky. Next add the ginger and garlic, cook for a further 4 mins. Add the ground spices, cook out for a further 2-3 mins. Add coconut milk and some water to deglaze the pan and then the passata. Remove the whole spices (just the cinnamon clove and cardamom), set aside. Blend the remaining mixture in the pan with a stick blender (or transfer to a blender) to a smooth consistency, the mix should now look like a creamy soup (leave this part out if you prefer a more textured curry).
  3. Bring to the boil and add the pumpkin (and coconut if using) to the curry mixture. Cook on a medium to high heat for 5 mins then add the spinach, peas and fresh coriander and cook for a further 5 mins or until the pumpkin is tender (dot over cook it as it will start to break down).
  4. Taste the curry, it should need seasoning. Add plenty of turns of salt and pepper from the London mills and then a tsp of sugar, then taste again and adjust to your
  5. Serve the curry with a sprinkling of garam masala, toasted coconut, freshly chopped coriander, fresh sliced chillies (if you like the heat), a swirl of coconut yogurt and your choice of rice or naan (or both if you’re like me!)

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