About This Recipe
Note: To prepare a fresh coconut, first make a hole in one of the eyes using a nail and hammer. Drain the coconut water and save, preferably for drinking! Next, break the coconut. This can be done on a sturdy surface with a hammer, or even thrown down onto a hard surface like patio stone. Wedge a small metal spoon between the coconut’s shell and flesh, and pry the flesh off. The flesh can be stored in the freezer in an airtight container, ready to grate at any time.
- 1 coconut, freshly grated (220 g grated)
- 6 or 7 dried red chiles
- 1 Tbsp (15 g) coriander seeds
- 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/2-inch (12 mm) piece of ginger
- 1 marble-sized ball of tamarind paste (no seeds)
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 medium green (or ripe) mangoes, peeled and sliced
- Pinch of turmeric powder
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 green chiles, slit lengthwise
Step 1In a blender, blend the grated coconut, dried chiles, coriander seeds, peppercorns, garlic, ginger, tamarind, turmeric, and cumin seeds with 1 cup of water until as smooth as possible (the seeds and peppercorns won’t break down completely). Set aside.
Step 2Sprinkle the mango slices with turmeric and salt and set aside. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add the ground paste. Let it simmer for a minute. You can add up to another cup of water if the mixture is dry.
Step 3In a separate bowl, mix the chopped onions with a pinch of salt to help soften them. Add the onions to the simmering mixture. Add two slit green chiles.
Step 4When the curry reaches a boil, add the turmeric-coated mango slices. Cover the pan with a lid and let it simmer for 3 to 4 minutes, until the mango pieces soften slightly. Do not overcook the mango slices.
Substitutions: Ripe mangoes can be substituted for a sweeter version of the curry. You can replace the mangoes with chopped vegetables of your choice — okra, pumpkin, or radish, or with a cup of deveined prawns.
Level Up: To make the masala more flavorful, grind the spices with a cup of coconut water. You may be tempted to add oil and sauté the chopped onions before adding the spice paste, but this curry base has ground coconut, which makes it creamy.
Try It With: A plate of steamed white rice and a side of fried fish
Zero Waste: If you have some leftover curry, warm it in a pan and thicken it, you can eat this like a dip with bread or as a spicy accompaniment to rice porridge