This Vegetarian Massaman Curry recipe is so versatile and so tasty. Pick your favorites or just use whatever veggies you have in the fridge to create a curry that will warm your soul!Jump to Recipe
“So good you’ll wanna punch a donkey! ASStounding flavors!”-Eeyore
What is Massaman Curry
Vegetarian Massaman Curry combines Persian flavors with traditional Thai flavors to create a one of a kind, intensely complex dish. Its middle eastern roots bring spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, cumin, and cardamon. While the Thai side brings curry staples like lemongrass, peppercorns, garlic, and shallots, amongst others.
Pork is forbidden in Islam and you won’t usually see it in a Massaman Curry. It is traditionally cooked with chicken, but there are all kinds of variations nowadays, like this vegetarian massaman curry.
Vegetarian Massaman Curry is a testament to the wonderful things that can happen when cultures combine.
What kind of veggies should I use ?
One of the great things about this vegetarian Massaman Curry recipe is how versatile it can be. As long as you have a good Massaman Curry Paste and some coconut cream, you can use whatever veggies you prefer!
Some people call this kind of cooking, garbage disposal cooking, but I don’t like that term. I love to approach cooking from a bigger perspective. When I’m meal planning, I try and think about how I’m going to use leftovers ingredients to make other meals.
For example, its hard to use an entire head of cauliflower when you’re just cooking for two. So to make sure I don’t waste and cauliflower, I’ll try and cook two recipes that week that call for cauliflower. While I didn’t use cauliflower in this vegetarian massaman curry, you absolutely could!
If everyone eats with their eyes, then color is one reason why. Bright vibrant veggies really bring this vegetarian Massaman curry to life.
Instead of a brown potato, I use purple Hawaiian yams. I like red AND orange bell peppers. For a pop of green I use broccolini, but normal broccoli florets work great. Paint a beautiful picture in your curry bowl, try different things, get weird!
Is this Vegetarian Massaman Curry Recipe Vegan?
Thai cooking is wonderful for so many reasons. One of those being, how easy it is to make a recipe vegan. With this particular recipe, the only thing that isn’t vegan is the Massaman Curry Paste.
But that is super easy to modify to vegan, simply leave out the fish sauce and shrimp paste. Boom, vegan baby!
Can’t I just use store bought Curry Paste?
Absolutely! In fact, most people in Thailand buy the pre made stuff. But most Americans go to McDonald’s for a burger. Do you wanna cook? Or do you wanna be a basic B? Pour a glass of wine, turn off the tv, turn up the music, and enjoy creating something.
The smells emanating thorough-out your house will be worth it alone. So buy the store bought stuff if you’re pressed for time, otherwise try cooking Massaman Curry Paste from scratch! You can instagram it, people will like you! #hooray
If you’re going the store bought route, Mae Ploy is a servicable option.
VEGETARIAN MASSAMAN CURRY
Ingredients for Vegetarian Massaman Curry
Okay, so let’s go over what exactly you’ll need for this Vegetarian Massaman Curry recipe.
- VEGGIES: In our Vegetarian Massaman Curry we use bell peppers, purple Hawaiian yams, green beans, broccolini, and onions. But feel free to use whatever you want! Just remember to add the potatoes or yams first, so they cook a bit longer than the peppers and onions.
- CURRY PASTE: You can use the store bought stuff in a pinch. But if you wanna really fresh and aromatic curry, use my Massaman Curry Paste Recipe. Just omit the fish sauce to make this recipe vegan.
- COCONUT CREAM/MILK: Depending on your preferred consistency, you’re gonna use one or the other, or a combination. I use equal parts of both. I like a soupier Vegetarian Massaman Curry so the rice soaks up all the goodness.
- PEANUTS: If you’re making an authentic Thai Vegetarian Massaman Curry, then you need peanuts. It really makes this recipe pop. The texture crunch and the peanut flavor really takes this, already complex dish, to the next level.
- CINNAMON: It’s not weird, I promise. Somehow all these ingredients blend together without overpowering each other. Don’t be afraid, toss a handful of whole cinnamon sticks in there.
- TAMARIND PASTE: Just another layer of flavor in this complex curry.
- ORANGE JUICE/Zest: Preferably fresh squeezed from a Naval Orange. Stir this in right before serving the Vegetarian Massaman Curry.
How to Make Vegetarian Massaman Curry
Follow these steps to make this Vegetarian Massaman Curry recipe.
Step 1: Sauté & Paste
In a large pot or dutch oven, warm the oil over medium high heat and add the onions. Salt and Sauté 3-5 mins. Add the curry paste and chili peppers, coat, sauté 1-2 mins.
Step 2: Add the Veg
Add the yams (or potatoes) and the Broccolini stems. Mix well, coating the veggies in the curry paste. Lower to medium heat and sauté 3-5 mins. Add the green beans, mix well. Sauté 1 min.
Step 3: Build the Curry
Add the coconut cream and milk, lemongrass, cinnamon sticks and tamarind paste. Stir to mix together. Add a cup of vegetable stock or water if a thinner curry is desired.
All the ingredients should be just submerged in liquid. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes. Uncover, add broccolini florets and bell peppers. Mix well and simmer for 5 minutes.
Step 4: Finishing Touches
Add the peanuts, orange juice and orange zest. Stir to mix. Turn heat to low and simmer for another 3-5 mins. Uncover, remove lemongrass and cinnamon sticks. Serve Vegetarian Massaman Curry with jasmine rice or sticky rice, garnish with more peanuts.
Can I store the leftovers?
Personally, I think this Vegetarian Massaman Curry is even better the next day. The flavors have more time to mingle and get to know each other.
If you do plan on keeping the leftovers, just add the peanuts to each individual serving. When stored for leftovers they can get a little soft.
Otherwise, just let the Vegetarian Massaman Curry cool and transfer to an airtight container. It should be good for the next 4-6 days. Just slowly reheat in a pot with a little water the next time you want some.