PORK & PUMPKIN THAI RED CURRY
I've been making this curry for years. It is so simple, and yet so interesting, bright and flavorful. In my opinion, the lime leaves and fish sauce make this curry; you can't skip them (well, you can - but you'd just be making a different recipe). I buy a bag of lime leaves at any Asian grocery store and keep them in the freezer; taking out a few leaves as I need them. They keep indefinitely. If you want to really speed up this dish, choose a squash that you don’t need to peel, such as Acorn. The peel tastes great when prepare in this way, adds interest, and is nutritious. Just slice in half, scoop out the seeds, and roughly cube.
1lb pork tenderloin, cubed
1-2 tbsp thai red curry powder* (or paste)
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tbsp neutral oil (e.g. canola)
1 lb winter squash (sugar pumpkin, acorn, butternut, etc.)
1 large can (400ml) full-fat coconut milk
6 kaffir lime leaves*
2 shallots, thinly sliced
Juice of 1 small lime
1-2 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp brown sugar
rice, to serve (optional)
cilantro, to garnish (optional)
Toss the pork cubes with the salt and curry powder. Let it sit for as long as you have (5 minutes, or ideally, 24hrs). Heat a large skillet. Add the oil. Brown the pork on all sides. Add the pumpkin, coconut milk, and lime leaves; bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, combine the lime juice and sliced shallot in a small bowl to mellow while the curry cooks. Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until pumpkin is tender. Stir in fish sauce (to taste) and brown sugar. Top with limey shallots (all the juice!) and cilantro. Serve on rice.