In my life, I typically avoid tech-y things. Matthew-San gives me all kinds of grief for not liking to use the Google App and he finally got me switched off Safari on to Chrome which really is a better browser. You should think about it if you aren’t on Chrome, I am now a believer. It’s amazing I have a website. Over the last year or so I have become a little more tech savvy, having taught myself about plug-ins and widgets and all kinds of website things I had no idea about. At all.
So in my pre-website days I was not as adventurous in the kitchen. Every fall, I would head to Williams Sonoma to stock up on their seasonal pumpkin simmering sauce. It’s delicious (but a little expensive). Some things I’ve had to give up living in Japan because I can’t justify spending fifteen dollars for a sauce plus another fifteen for shipping. Thirty dollars for a simmering sauce. I got to thinking, experimenting and taste testing and made my own. It is remarkably easy. I opted for canned pumpkin so that I can make it any time of year that my heart desires because I don’t just want to eat pumpkin curry in the fall. I want to eat pumpkin curry all year long. This sauce will set you back just a few dollars and it makes a large batch. I divided it into two pint jars (each was very full) and made my little family (Matthew-San and myself) pumpkin curry chicken twice. Half was plenty to simmer with a couple pounds of chicken but you could use the whole batch at once if desired.
You have a lot of flexibility with this simmering sauce. I opted for chicken, cutting chicken breasts in one inch chunks, cooking the chicken in just a bit of oil, salt and pepper to a light golden brown before adding the sauce and simmering for about 20 minutes. If it starts to get a little too dry, you can add in a bit of water. Another option is to cook vegetables in it which would be a lovely vegetarian option. Even a sturdier white fish such as halibut would be lovely with this. Do cook your food a bit before adding the simmering sauce so you don’t have to cook it for so long that the sauce dries out in the process.
By these lovely tokens September days are here, with summer’s best of weather and Autumn’s best of cheer. –Helen Hunt Jackson
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into ¼ inch circles
- ½ Tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 Serrano pepper, seeded and cut into very fine pieces
- 1 14-ounce can Pumpkin puree
- 3 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2 Tablespoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- In a large nonstick skillet over low heat, melt butter. Add onion circles and cook for 15-20 minutes until caramelized, stirring regularly. Remove from heat.
- In a large saucepan over medium low heat, add olive oil, garlic, ginger and Serrano pepper. Cook for 3-4 minutes until soft and fragrant but do not burn.
- Add to garlic and ginger in large saucepan: caramelized onions, pumpkin puree, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, coconut milk, garam masala, salt, sugar, cinnamon and paprika. Raise heat to medium and cook for five minutes to heat sauce to bubbling. Turn off heat and puree using immersion blender or blender.
- Makes 4 ½ cups approximately. Sauce may be used immediately or stored in refrigerator for one week to two weeks. Though I was tempted to can for long term storage, the pH of this is not low enough (not enough acidity) to can and store.