Purple Yam and Kabocha Squash Curry


4 purple yams
½ kabocha squash
4 cans coconut milk
1 can diced tomato
1 stalk lemongrass
½ inch piece galanga or ginger, peeled and cut into chunks
3 kaffir lime leaves
Generous spoonful red curry paste (optional)
4 shallots
1 small can bamboo shoots


  1. In a large pot, bring coconut milk to a simmer with lemongrass (be sure to smash it first), galanga, and kaffir lime leaves. Turn off and heat and let coconut milk steep at least one hour, preferably longer

  2. Peel and cube the purple yams.

  3. Cut the kabocha into chunks. It’s ok to leave the peel on, it’s edible!

  4. Strain lemongrass, galanga, and kaffir lime leaves out of coconut milk.

  5. Bring coconut milk, tomatoes, and red curry paste (if using) to a simmer in a large pot. Sprinkle with salt and add yams and squash.

  6. Let curry simmer, covered, being sure to stir occasionally to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pot and burning. Add thinly sliced shallots.

  7. Once yams and squash are soft, about 25 minutes, turn off heat and add bamboo shoots.

  8. Serve with rice and garnished with cilantro leaves.