Pumpkin Curry with Tofu

After eating this squash curry so many times at Nicky's and Typhoon Thai restaurants here in Pittsburgh, I decided to try as many recipes for it as I could. This is what has come to be my special recipe for it. You may peel the pumpkin if you want, but it will fall apart way more easily. The rind will soften during the cooking process and it is perfectly edible. Plan to make jasmine or basmati rice with this recipe. Enjoy.

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
35 mins
Additional Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 15 mins
4 servings


  • 1 (12 ounce) package firm tofu

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil

  • 1 small Japanese pumpkin (kabocha squash)

  • 4 ounces red curry paste, or to taste

  • 1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk

  • ½ teaspoon grated lime zest

  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce

  • 1 tablespoon white sugar

  • ¼ cup Thai basil leaves

  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves


  1. Wrap tofu in paper towels. Place tofu onto a plate and place another plate on top. Set a 3- to 5-pound weight on top. Press tofu for 20 to 30 minutes; drain and discard the accumulated liquid and paper towels. Cut tofu into 1-inch cubes.

  2. Heat canola oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Fry tofu in the hot oil until golden on all sides, 10 to 15 minutes. Set aside on paper towels to drain excess oil.

  3. Meanwhile, cut pumpkin into 3/4-inch cubes.

  4. Place pumpkin in a large saucepan with enough water to cover and bring to a boil. Continue to boil until pumpkin is just cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Make sure the rind softens, but not to the point the pumpkin is falling apart. Drain pumpkin, reserving about 1/4 cup cooking liquid. Set pumpkin and liquid aside.

  5. Heat a large saute pot over medium-high heat. Add curry paste and stir for 15 to 30 seconds, then add coconut milk and lime zest. Cook for 5 minutes. Add cooked pumpkin, tofu, basil, lime juice, fish sauce, and sugar. Bring to a boil; cook until the pumpkin is soft, about 10 minutes. If you feel there isn't enough curry liquid, add the reserved cooking water. Garnish with cilantro.

Cook's Notes:

You can use light coconut milk instead of regular.

You can find Japanese pumpkin (or kabocha squash) at Asian food markets. Call around, not every one carries these items. I've had good luck finding Japanese pumpkin and Thai basil at farmers markets and organic food stores.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

352 Calories
28g Fat
19g Carbs
10g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 352
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 28g 36%
Saturated Fat 19g 97%
Sodium 797mg 35%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 2g 9%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 12mg 61%
Calcium 339mg 26%
Iron 8mg 46%
Potassium 343mg 7%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

You’ll Also Love