This versatile, easy coconut cream-based curry needs a gutsy, spicy, sweet curry paste such as south Indian, Thai or Malaysian — the choice is yours. Canned or dried beans can be used and the latter can be cooked in the oven or slow cooker where they will remain lovely and whole — or, if you are in a hurry, on top of the stove.
Read more about haricot beans here.
For the beans
|1 ½ cups||White haricot beans, dried; or use canned beans (see the tips above) (Main)|
|⅓ cup||Grapeseed oil, or another flavourless oil|
|1||Large onion, peeled and finely chopped|
|1 piece||Ginger, 5-8cm, peeled and finely shredded|
|4 large||Garlic cloves, use up to 6; crushed, peeled and chopped|
|3 Tbsp||Curry paste, use 4 if desired|
|1 can||Coconut cream, 400ml (Main)|
|1 cup||Raw cashew nuts|
|1 handful||Chopped mint|
|1 handful||Chopped coriander|
For the vegetables (optional)
|½||Cauliflower, cut into florets and blanched|
|1 large||Courgette, sliced|
|7||Small red pepper sweets, use up to 8, or use 2 standard red peppers, chopped|
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- Soak the dried beans overnight in plenty of water. Drain and place in a slow cooker. Cover with one litre Tarbais beans of water, or enough to cover the beans well, cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours. In a casserole cook in the oven at 140C for about 4 hours or in a hurry, boil covered in plenty of water in a saucepan for one houror until tender. Strain.
- Heat the oil in a large wide pan and cook the onion and ginger over a low heat for a good 10-12 minutes, stirring regularly until the onion is well softened, but not browned. The onion needs to be cooked as once the coconut cream has been added, it will not cook to soft. Add the garlic and curry paste and cook, stirring well until the curry paste begins to separate out from the oil and the pan's contents smell fragrant — allow about 4 minutes.
- Stir in the beans, coconut cream and cashew nuts and bring to a simmer. Add ½-1 cup water to thin the curry to your preferred consistency. Add the vegetables now, if using, and simmer for about 5 minutes until they are hot and tender. Season with salt and sprinkle in the herbs just before serving. Serve in bowls garnished with crispy fried onion, herbs and cashew nuts, if wished.