Chicken & Sweet Potato Curry


It’s full on into winter here in New Zealand, and the slow cooker’s getting some good use. This is one of my all-time favourite meals – a red curry with chicken, kumara (or sweet potato for you folks in the US) and tomato. And…. the surprise ingredient which adds real wow factor? Peanut butter! Oh yessssss…….

This recipe is from Simon and Alison Holst’s ‘100 great ways to use slow cookers and crockpots’ – a bit of a mouthful, but an excellent cook-book. You don’t need to have a slow cooker of course – a large saucepan on a low stove setting would do fine. And just watch that red curry paste – 3 tablespoons is fairly full on, so if you prefer a milder taste, you’ll want to reduce the amount. Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!


Serves 4

Ingredients: (Click here for unit converter)

  • 3 Tbsp red curry paste
  • 3 Tbsp peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
  • ¾ cup coconut cream
  • 3 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp fish sauce
  • ½ tsp turmeric, optional
  • 600-800g golden kumara (sweet potato)
  • 600-700g (8 large) chicken drumsticks or 4 large thighs (boned or deboned)
  • 4 firm, vine-ripened, red tomatoes, chopped
  • 1-2 Tbsp cornflour (cornstarch), potato starch or arrowroot for thickening, optional
  • Basil or flat-leaf parsley to garnish


  1. Turn the slow cooker onto HIGH and coat with non-stick spray. Add the first five ingredients directly into the cooker, adding the turmeric for extra flavour and colour if you like, then stir everything together until blended.
  2. Take your chicken pieces and coat them briefly in the sauce and place temporarily on a plate.
  3. Peel the kumara (sweet potato) and cut into 1cm thick slices, cutting large slices in half again crosswise. Place these in the sauce.
  4. Lay the chicken pieces on top of the kumara. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours, or until the chicken has cooked through. From time to time, turn the chicken pieces over to ensure they are cooked evenly. After 3 hours of cooking, add the chopped tomatoes and give the whole mixture a stir – this will break up the kumara and start thickening the curry.
  5. 15 minutes before serving, check that you are happy with the consistency. If you prefer a thicker sauce, mix the cornflour, potato starch or arrowroot into a thin paste with a little water and stir in. If it needs thinning down, just add a little water.
  6. Serve over brown or white rice with basil or flat-leaf parsley as garnish.

Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Canon 50mm 1.8 lens / Natural lighting


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