Banana Curry

I LOVE to cook. When the kids were smaller (and by smaller I mean babies, because clearly they’re still small now!) I pretty much prepared everything from scratch, and although we’re a bit too busy for that every night now I do still like to cook in batches at the weekend and freeze for reheating later in the week.

Banana curry is one of our faves. The kids love it because its got a slightly sweet taste, friends love it because they don’t expect to enjoy a curry made with banana, and I love it because its vegetarian and super easy.
The recipe was adapted from various red lentil curries I have tried over the years. Try it for yourself and let me know how you get on 🙂

You’ll need:

– 4 or 5 banana’s roughly chopped. You REALLY need very ripe/brown bananas for this or it wont taste right!
– 1 cup of split red lentils (wash thoroughly first)
– 2 cups thick coconut cream/milk
– ½ cup of soy milk or veg stock if sauce becomes too thick
– 1 large onion, finely chopped
– 1 sweet red pepper finely chopped
– 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
– 2 tablespoon of tomato purée
– Juice of one lime
– 3 tablespoon ground almond powder
– 1 tablespoon garam masala
– 2 tablespoon curry powder
– ½ tablespoon of chilli powder
– 1 teaspoon ground cumin
– 1 teaspoon coriander
– 1 teaspoon turmeric
– 2 crushed cardamon pods (pick out after cooking)
– ½ teaspoon cinnamon powder

This looks like a lot of ingredients but it’s not really as long as you have these basic spices at home already. I’m a bit obsessed with collecting herbs and spices. Its sad really, when a person gets excited over a new jar of smoked paprika.

Method:
1. Slowly fry off the onion, pepper and garlic until soft and brown in a little oil (peanut oil is fantastic) over a medium heat.
2. In a bowl mix the almond, lime juice, garam masala, chilli, cumin, curry, coriander, turmeric and cinnamon with a tiny bit of warm water to make a paste.
3. Add this to the onions and garlic, along with the tomato puree and cardamon. Mix well.
4. Slowly stir in the coconut cream over a lower heat until it starts to thicken.
5. Add the red lentils and half the banana’s. Leave to simmer for at least 30 minutes. Add stock/soy milk if it becomes too thick.
6. After 30 minutes of simmering add the remaining banana. Simmer for a further 30 minutes or until you’re ready to serve.

Alternatively throw everything (except lentils and banana) into a slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hrs. Add banana and lentils 1 hr before serving and cook on high.

Taste throughout the cooking process and up the spices if its not hot enough for you. Add more coconut milk if its too hot!
Serve with rice,  a spoon of natural yogurt, and a sprinkle of finely chopped fresh mint. Tastes even better when left overnight then reheated.

Enjoy!

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