Sweet Potato Satay Curry
Feast away on this delicious Sweet Potato Satay Curry! 100% vegan and requiring only a small number of ingredients, this low-calorie dinner-time treat is guaranteed to become a family favorite recipe that you’ll keep coming back for.
Satay is a traditional Southeast Asian sauce composed of peanuts and red curry paste - making for a deliciously creamy yet crunchy sauce with all that oh-so-good nutty flavor.
With roots dating back to the Middle Ages on the Indonesian island of Java, satay sauces and satay-style dishes can now be found across much of Japan, Malaysia and Indonesia.
Traditionally used to braise meats - primarily chicken - this sauce has since been adapted and can be fit into a variety of plant-based dishes and appetizers!
This Vegan Sweet Potato Curry recipe is easy to cook, uses limited ingredients and comes together in under an hour. Rich in proteins, carbohydrates and healthy fats, this makes for the perfect healthy evening meal that is a certified crowd pleaser!
Salt and heat are perfectly balanced here - so you won’t need any additional seasoning.
Some key facts about sweet potatoes: why are they so great?
Let’s dive into some facts about what seems to be every vegan’s favourite ingredient. Why are so great and why they are good for our health?
1. They are low in calories but high in carbohydrates, which are known to help maximise energy release.
2. They are a great source of calcium, potassium and carotenes!
3. 80g of sweet potato counts as one of your five a day! Whereas white potatoes do not.
1 tbsp of Coconut Oil
1 white onion, finely sliced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 thumb-sized piece of root ginger, minced with skin on
3 tbsp of Thai Red Curry Paste (if buying elsewhere, check the label to see if it’s vegan)
1 tbsp of Smooth Peanut Butter
500g (or two large) sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
400ml can of Full-Fat Coconut Milk
200g of fresh spinach or bagged spinach - frozen wouldn’t work here.
1 lime, juiced
100g of peanuts (optional)
1 red chilli, seeds removed (optional)
1 bunch of fresh coriander, chopped (optional)
For the curry
For the garnish.
In a medium to large cast-iron casserole dish, heat a tablespoon of coconut oil until it has melted.
Gently fry your onion for 1-2 minutes or until slightly translucent.
Next, add your ginger and garlic and fry for a further 2 minutes before stirring in your red curry paste and peanut butter to your aromatics. Cook for another minute.
Pour in all of your sweet potatoes, the can of coconut milk and water. Stir and bring to a simmer.
Cook for between 40 and 45 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.
Meanwhile, roast your peanuts in the oven at 200°C for about 20 minutes.
Once your peanuts are nice and brown, remove them from the oven and leave them to cool before seasoning with sea salt.
When your curry is almost ready, stir in your spinach and leave it to wilt.
Serve in a bowl with long grain rice and garnish with some coriander, the roasted peanuts and fresh chilli if you like a bit of extra spice.
Can this recipe be cooked in one pan?
You really won’t be needing much equipment when it comes to cooking a Satay Sweet Potato Curry. All you’ll really need is a chopping board, your sharpest knife and a large pan or casserole dish.
We used an average-sized cast-iron casserole dish which provided ample space to fry together the onion, garlic and ginger, as well as accommodate the sweet potato chunks and coconut milk.
How to add that extra bit of spice
Let’s just say it, satay curries just aren’t as spicy as some of us would like - well unless you go for an extra extra extra hot red curry paste. You can easily turn up the heat, however, with a red chilli. It’s sure to bring your Satay Sweet Potato Curry to your desired spice level.
Mince and stir in some finely minced red chilli into your curry with the rest of your alliums and spices to maximise that spicy flavour. Alternatively, sprinkle over some thin slices alongside the rest of your garnish.
PlantX Tip: Make sure to remove seeds according to how hot you like your food. The rule of thumb is that more seeds equals more spice.
Can this recipe be made in advance?
Like many curries, we think that Satay Sweet Potato Curry is best served hot and fresh. Any curry, particularly a potato-based curry, that sits in the fridge for too long will inevitably become mushy and have an undesirable consistency.
There are, however, a few things that you can do in advance to ensure that this Satay Sweet Potato Curry comes together as quickly as possible.
- Prep all of your vegetables beforehand: Peel, chop and dice everything the evening before and place in a Tupperware in the fridge. This will save you heaps of time when it comes to cooking!
- Clean as you go. That’s it. Organised cooking means that the food can be enjoyed as soon as it is ready.
This really is the framework for a Vegan Sweet Potato Curry that can be easily adapted depending on your tastes and preferences. If you’re not a fan of some of the ingredients in this recipe, here’s a quick guide to how you can substitute some different ingredients and make your very own satay-style curry.
Thai Red Curry Paste
The world of curry pastes can sometimes feel a bit daunting if you're not used to cooking South Asian or Southeast Asian cuisine. These handy pantry ingredients work as a tool to infuse all of your curries with Asian spice and flavour.
Different brands contain different ingredients and different levels of heat, so we would encourage you to shop around and try out different brands.
If Thai Red Curry Paste just isn’t for you, you can always give Thai Green Curry Paste a go!
Any other starchy root vegetable could work well here so you can always feel free to experiment with a range of other local and fresh produce. Pumpkin, carrot and white sweet potatoes can make for a nice seasonal vegan curry or you could even try adding some chickpeas for an extra bit of protein.
Do you feel that spinach can sometimes get a bit lost in your vegan curries and would prefer a leafy green with a bit more bite?
Why not try using something like kale, broccoli rabe or chard? Some of the more fibrous parts of these greens (the stems) must be added earlier to your satay to give them time to cook through thoroughly.
What goes well with Satay Sweet Potato Vegan Curry?
Long-grain rice: We think that this vegan Satay Sweet Potato Curry is best served alongside a fresh warm bowl of Thai long-grain white rice. Sticky rice could also work but make sure to serve it in a separate bowl!
White wine: Nothing goes better with a bowl of spicy Southeast Asian Curry than a glass of chilled dry white wine. For this recipe, we would recommend any organic mid-range sauvignon blanc or chardonnay.