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Sweet Potato, Chickpea and Spinach Coconut Curry

By on April 2, 2017
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This curry is just divine! The coconut  milk brings it all together, mellow- ing and integrating the spices while adding a light sweetness that pairs wonderfully  with the sweet potato. It’s the perfect cozy food! This is a thick, stew-like curry—not runny or soupy. It’s the kind you’ll love to scoop up with a hunk of bread.

Because the recipe moves quickly once you’ve started, be sure to have the ingredients prepped and ready to toss into the pot as soon as they’re called for. (Keep them separate after prepping, as they are added at different stages.) This helps you avoid burning the spices. I also recommend  chopping  the sweet potatoes very small (1/4- to 1/2-inch/5 mm to 1 cm pieces); they will cook much faster this way. I’m all about getting food into our bellies as fast as humanly possible.


4 teaspoons (20 mL) virgin coconut oil

1 tablespoon (15 mL) cumin seeds

1 medium onion, finely chopped (about 2 cups/500 mL)

3/4 to 1 teaspoon (4 to 5 mL) fine sea salt, to taste, plus a pinch

3 large cloves garlic, minced

4 teaspoons (20 mL) grated fresh ginger

1 teaspoon (5 mL) ground turmeric

1 teaspoon (5 mL) ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) red pepper flakes, or to taste

1 medium/large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/4- to 1/2-inch (5 mm to 1 cm) dice (about 3 cups/750 mL)

1 (14-ounce/398 mL) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed, or 11/2 cups (375 mL) cooked chickpeas

1 (14-ounce/398 mL) can diced tomatoes, with juices

1 (14-ounce/400 mL) can light coconut milk

1 (5-ounce/142 g) package baby spinach

Freshly ground black pepper

For Serving

Cooked basmati rice, quinoa, millet, or sorghum

Chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Unsweetened shredded or large-flake coconut

Lime wedges (optional)


1. In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. The oil is hot enough when a cumin seed sizzles when tossed into the pan. Add the cumin seeds and toast for about a minute, until fragrant and lightly darkened in color (be careful not to burn them). Immediately stir in the onion, season with a pinch of salt, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft and translucent.

2. Add the garlic, ginger, turmeric, coriander, and red pepper flakes. Stir to combine and sauté for a couple of minutes, until the garlic softens.

3. Add the sweet potato, chickpeas, tomatoes with their juices, and coconut  milk. Stir to combine, cover, and simmer over medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes, until the potatoes are fork-tender. At this point, I always mash one-third of the mixture to thicken the sauce (using a potato masher), but this step is optional.

4. Stir in the spinach and cook until wilted. Season with the salt and black pepper to taste.

5. Serve on a bed of cooked grains, garnished with cilantro and coconut. If desired, offer lime wedges for squeezing over the curry. Store the cooled curry in an airtight container in the fridge for 4 to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Make it grain-free.  Serve this curry without cooked grains.

Excerpted from “Oh She Glows Every Day” by Angela Liddon. Copyright © 2016 Glo Bakery Corporation. Photography by Ashley McLaughlin. Published by Penguin Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the 
Publisher. All rights reserved.

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