Once upon a time, in the north of England, there was a scary Witch who every 31st of October, dusted off her cauldron, went into the forest to gather all the needed ingredients and cooked a spooky Curry Halloween Recipe.

The Ingredients

For the Mysterious Curry Paste

· 1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds, toasted

· 2 teaspoons whole cumin seeds, toasted

· 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns, toasted

· 1 teaspoon coarse salt

· 3 serrano chiles, sliced

· 1/2 cup fresh cilantro

· 2 stalks fresh lemongrass, trimmed and chopped (1/2 cup)

· 8 garlic cloves, minced (1/4 cup)

· 2 scallions, chopped (1/4 cup)

· 2 tablespoons chopped peeled fresh ginger

· 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

· 1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest (from 2 limes)


For the Hag’s Stew

· 2 ounces spinach (1 cup)

· 1 can (14 ounces) unsweetened regular coconut milk

· 1 can (14 ounces) unsweetened light coconut milk

· 1 medium zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced 1 inch thick (21/4 cups)

· 12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces

· 12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces

· Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

· 3/4 cup fresh basil

· Serrano chiles, thinly sliced, for garnish

· Squeamish Squash with Rice

· Lime wedges, for serving


Witch’s Directions…

Firstly make the mysterious curry paste: Grind coriander, cumin, peppercorns, and salt with a mortar and pestle, or with the bottom of a heavy skillet. Add the remaining ingredients, and grind them until a paste forms.


Secondly make the hag’s stew: Puree 5 tablespoons of curry paste, the spinach, and 1 cup regular coconut milk in a blender until smooth.

Finally bring the remaining regular coconut milk and the light coconut milk to a boil in a medium heavy stockpot. Reduce the heat, stir in curry-spinach mixture, and simmer it  for 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, and cook until is slightly tender, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken, and the season with salt and pepper. Cook until the zucchini is tender and the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add the basil, and the garnish with serrano chiles. Serve with rice and lime wedges.