Thai Green Curry with Red Kuri Squash

Growing up, my family lived in the woods. We couldn’t really see our neighbors there were so many trees. And these trees meant business. Huge, towering oaks with thousands upon thousands of orangey-red leaves each, standing over 2 acres of lawn. And that meant that during the months of September, October, and November, 47.68% of my time (along with my siblings) was spent raking.

In the days before I was considered big enough for slave labor…

You can imagine how happy I was to be a renter once I went to college. No more shoveling, no more picking up sticks, and especially no more raking. Huzzah!

And then we bought a house. And on our little city lot, we managed to purchase two strapping maple trees, a massive oak tree, and several leafy contributors in the back. So we bought rakes. And despite my incredibly bad attitude, I was surprised that we finished in just a few hours…not the endless days of raking I had grown up to expect. And this year, it went even better due to a freak windstorm that that blew the majority of our leaves into our neighbors’ yards down the block. We stood behind the curtains and gloated. And maybe even high-fived.
And then there was today. We woke up to another gusty day, but this time, the leaves were blowing back into our yard. We’re pretty sure we saw our neighbors peeking out from behind their blinds, cackling in our general direction. 
So, we’ll be out to rake again this week…before the predicted snow *gasp* comes later this week (sorry to complain, East Coast). With the gusty days and promise of snow showers, curry just feels right. Especially thai green curry with its killer combo of spicy heat and sweet coconut milk. 
 (even the discarded skin is pretty)
We had picked up a variety of squash at a roadside stand a few weeks back, you know, to celebrate fall and all its weird gourdiness, but then I started doing some research on the beautiful red one we’d picked out. And I found out it was a red kuri squash, or ambercup, and that it was more nutty-tasting than other squash varieties. I was intrigued, so after some quality time on the interwebs looking for recipes using this type of squash, I came across a recipe for thai green curry soup with red kuri squash and chicken. But the recipe seemed like it would be a little brothy and not quite as creamy-awesome as a normal green curry. 
So, with a little trepidation, I turned the soup into a regular curry recipe. And the result was fantastic. I thought I would miss the chicken we normally cook with green curry, but this squash totally stole the show. It’s nuttiness simmered in coconut milk seemed like a match made in heaven, and was perfectly balanced by the addition of garlic, ginger, lime, and a mix of curry powder with curry paste. Add some late fall vegetables (or start dipping into your frozen stash), pour this curry onto a bed of rice, and be glad it’s the season for hot, steamy curries…even if that means more raking is in your future too.
Thai Green Curry with Red Kuri Squash

Thai Green Curry with Red Kuri Squash

(recipe inspired by The Split Pea Blog...from Albania!)

(yields 4-6 servings)

I adapted this recipe by turning it from a soup into a regular curry. I omitted 5 cups of chicken broth as well as the chicken. Instead, I doubled the onion, and added lime juice, as well as bell peppers and green beans, to the mix. I changed fish sauce to soy sauce, and served it all over rice.


1 tbsp. olive oil

2 small onions (I used one red, one white)

5-6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

2-in. piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

1 1/2 tbsp. green curry paste (less or more depending on the spiciness of your paste)

2 tbsp. Indian curry powder

1 (14 oz.) can of coconut milk

2 1/2 tbsp. soy sauce

2 tbsp. sweet chili sauce

4 c. red kuri/ambercup squash, cut into 1-in cubes (about 2/3 of a squash)

1 tbsp. brown sugar

1-2 tbsp. lime juice

1/4 c. water

salt to taste

1-1 1/2 c. vegetable (broccoli is outstanding, I used thai green beans because I had them), cut into 1-in. pieces

1 bell pepper, cut into thin slices (flash-frozen bell peppers work great in this recipe!)

1/2 c. fresh chopped cilantro

2 green onions, thinly sliced


Heat the oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, ginger and sauté for about 3-5 minutes.

Add the curry paste and curry powder and cook for 1 more minute, stirring constantly.

Stir in your coconut milk, soy sauce, chili sauce, brown sugar, lime juice, squash and water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat. Simmer, uncovered for around 15 minutes or until squash is tender but not mushy. (In other words, you can slide a fork through it pretty easily without it falling apart).

Add your veggies (broccoli or green beans, plus bell peppers) and simmer for 5 more minutes or until vegetables are tender-crisp.

Serve over rice, and garnish with cilantro and green onions. Get someone to cook this while you rake so that you have a tasty incentive to actually finish.

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29 thoughts on “Thai Green Curry with Red Kuri Squash

  1. I don’t think I can do this one with that coconut milk — you know us Johannsens and coconut. But that squash looks awesome — Does it taste at all like butternut squash?

    • I think it’s better than butternut – has more flavor to it.
      And though you’d be missing out on the coconut flavor, you could try using almond milk, evaporated milk, or ground up cashews mixed with milk as a substitue for the coconut milk (ideas from chowhound!)

    • Are you guys allergic to coconut too? I’m not but my husband is so I don’t cook or bring home anything with coconut in it (and do you know how many things have coconut products in them? I just figured out that Dove is the only bar of soap in Target that isn’t made with coconut acid!). Liz, I’ll have to try this sometime that I come over without my hubby.

      • Heidi — No, we’re not allergic, we just really dislike the taste of coconut — and can detect it in crazy-infinitesimal amounts. Strange that we are both like that, eh? (p.s. We are very food-compatible. It one of those after-you-get-married fun surprises! (-:)

  2. I made this using a red curry, shiitakes, snow peas and shrimp. I served it with organic short grain brown rice. He likes it hot so I added some fresh Thai chilis. This was the first time i used the squash. I was in organic vegie share. I will make this again. I toasted the seeds like I do when we carve the pumpkin.

  3. I’m late to the party on this one, but I found it looking for a recipe for my red kuri squash to star in. This was DELICIOUS. I was serving it to people who don’t eat spicy food, so I cut down on the sweet chili sauce a bit and used a curry paste I knew was very mild. It turned out creamy and nutty and just perfect. I served it with homemade roti for a bit of cultural fusion. I want to eat it all winter long. :)

  4. I’m a little late to the party on this one, but I came across it while I was looking for a recipe to star my red kuri squash. This is DELICIOUS. I was making it for people who don’t like spicy food, so I cut down on the sweet chili sauce a bit, and used a very mild curry paste. Still, it was creamy and nutty and just perfect. I served it with homemade roti for a little cultural fusion (or confusion, haha). Thank you so much for this recipe!

  5. just found your website as I was searching for recipes on kuri squash…
    my first attempt at eating, cooking, doing something fun with it!
    gorgeous color squash and your recipe fits the ticket. love the look of your blog.

    thanks for the recipe!

  6. Thanks for the delicious recipe! It came out perfectly. I added broccoli, carrots, red pepper, spinach, shitake mushrooms, and tofu along with the squash. First time trying the Red kuri, and i think it is my new favorite kind.

    I’ll definitely be back for more recipes.

  7. Very good recipe!!! My 2 year old loved the taste of curried squash. I have been looking for squash recipes and will have to keep this one.

  8. We tried this tonight with fresh kuri squash from our garden. This was our first time eating kuri squash and it was wonderful.

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  11. This was delicious! I’m so glad that I picked up the beautiful kuri squash at the store and then found this recipe. Cooking times, etc were really easy to follow. . . I only omitted the sugar and then ended up doubling the curry paste and coconut milk (we like a lot of sauce in our curry). Thank you for this delicious recipe. We will definitely make it again!!

  12. This was excellent! I’ll have to use less green curry next time bc it was a little fiery for me….but even with that I had seconds! It’s hard to find a curry recipe that is as good as my local Thai restaurant’s…but this fit the bill. Loved the kuri squash addition too! Thanks for posting!!

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