Pumpkin & Portabello Vindaloo


This curry is THE BOMB!!! I have tasted many Vindaloo curries at different restaurants in different cities and I have always found them to be with very complex flavors and just too darn spicy. I know a Vindaloo is supposed to be spicy – but I have often found that to enhance that character in the curry, restaurants tend to overdo it and as a result most of the time I find a Vindaloo curry to be borderline bitter.

This recipe is big on spices but just in the right amount to form a delicious curry. Vindaloo is not for faint hearted but if you really want to try it then feel free to add a dash of coconut milk when its completely done cooking. I tried it with both with and without coconut milk, and I did like it more with the coconut milk. Also, if you are a vegetarian and have always had a desire to try Vindaloo but couldn’t as there isn’t really a vegetarian version for it out there then this is the recipe you want to make. The portabello mushrooms are just fantastic in this curry as they are hearty and meaty and the combination with pumpkin works really well and the pumpkin releases it sweetness as it cooks which compliments the spices in the curry very well. Use potatoes if its not pumpkin season where you live. Serve with rice or naan while its still hot. This recipe has definitely become one of my favorite for Vindaloo.



Serving for 2 to 3 people


2 portabello mushrooms, cleaned and sliced of 1/4 inch thickness

1 small pumpkin, peeled and diced

1 medium onion, peeled and roughly diced

1/2 inch piece ginger, peeled

1 to 2 garlic cloves, peeled

1 tsp kashmiri mirch (ground)

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 tbsp coriander seeds

1 dried whole red chili

1/2 tsp whole peppercorn

2 to 3 whole cloves

1 small piece of cinnamon

1 tbsp shredded coconut

2 tbsp malt or apple cider vinegar

1 tbsp tomato puree

3 tbsp vegetable oil or ghee

3 cups water

1/2 cup coconut milk (optional)

  1. In a saucepan add cumin, coriander, peppercorn, whole red chili, cloves, cinnamon and coconut. Dry roast on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes or till the spices get fragrant. Remove from heat.
  2. In a blender add onions, ginger, garlic, kashmiri mirch, dry roasted spices and vinegar and blend to form a smooth puree.
  3. In a deep pot heat 2 tbsp of oil on medium heat. Add the onion mix and sir well. Cook the mixture on medium high heat stirring frequently for 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato puree and cook for a couple more minutes.
  5. Add water and salt and stir to mix well. Cook the sauce on medium low and keep it on a simmer.
  6. While the sauce is simmering heat rest of the oil in a sauce pan and stir fry the mushrooms with a couple pinches of salt till the mushrooms turn golden brown.
  7. Add the mushrooms and pumpkins to the simmering sauce. Cook uncovered till the pumpkin turns tender. If at any point the curry starts looking like its getting dry – cover the pot and continue to cook.
  8. Once the pumpkin get tender – taste and adjust the seasoning and turn the heat off. Mix in the coconut milk at this point and let the curry sit partially covered in its own heat for 10 to 15 minutes.
  9. Serve hot with rice or naan.