Monday, 16 September 2013

Vegan 'Beef' Soy Chunks and Green Papaya Curry

The past few days I have been feeling rather ravenous in my appetite.  I want to snarl, bite and spit. No just kidding, but I have been wishing to sink my teeth (recently checked by the dentist)  into something of more substance , something with a bit more texture.  

Soy chunks don't often appear on my homely menu, soy mince maybe for Shepherdess Pie or Tamale Pie, but not so much soy chunks.  This was the time to try it in an attempt to substitute it for the real thing - beef.

I have seen a number of different recipes for Beef and Green Papaya Curry - a Jamaican variation and a Thai variation, but was recently reminded of it when I picked up Shelina Permalloo cookbook Sunshine on a Plate from the local library (yes after confiscating my library card for overdue book fees - D felt pity upon me and returned it back to me).  Obviously I don't eat meat, but it was the addition of the papaya that got me intrigued.  As many of you will know, I like trying different recipes such as Pakistani Watermelon and Black Bean Curry,  Sri Lankan Beetroot Curry, Malaysian Black Pepper Tofu as well as Pineapple Curry.

I've only ever had papaya also known as Paw Paw fruit in a exotic fruit salad with mango, but not in a spicy curry so it made sense to the adventurous and experimental vegetarian cook in me to try it; and of course veganize what would otherwise be a carnivorous meal.  

Papaya is not the easiest of vegetables to find, and then when you do, its not the most affordable.  At full whack a large papaya costs £4.oo, I purchased mine at reduced price for £2.50, which enabled me to try this recipe.  I have plans for the other half.   
I liked this Mauritian inspired 'Beef' Soy Chunks and Papaya Curry.  The 'beef' soy chunks fulfilled that desire in me to gnaw my gnashers on something more textual and the papaya was an interesting addition.  It wasn't sweet at all and worked with the spicy sauce.  
Vegan 'Beef' Soy Chunks and Green Papaya Curry
Serves 4 - 6
100g soy chunks, reconstituted, then drained and water excess water squeezed out.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 onion, minced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2- 4 green chillies, sliced
3 tablespoons Mauritian Curry Powder 
600ml vegetable stock
1/2 large green papaya, peeled, seeds removed and cut into bite size chunks
Fresh coriander, minced
Heat the oil in a wide pan, add onions and garlic and chillies and cook for a few minutes, stirring so to stop it from burning and sticking.  Then stir in the curry powder,'veef' soy chunks, papaya chunks and vegetable stock and bring to a simmer.  Reduce the heat, cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring from time to time.  Check the papaya is cooked.  Stir in the coriander and serve immediately with rice. Adapted from Mijo Recipes: Easy Mauritian Recipes. and Sunshine on a Plate by Shelina Permalloo.  Here is a link to Shelina Permalloo original recipe for Beef and Green Papaya Curry.


  1. Yum, this looks great! And I don't think I have ever had curry with papaya in it!

    1. Thanks Mandee. I hope you get to try papaya in a curry style dish,

  2. This recipe brought back a lovely memory for me- I once cooked green papaya ad soya chunks for a dear friend in Puri, India, using a gas burner on the concrete floor of my hotel room, on a steamy, rainy August day- it was delicious. Thanks for reminding me; you Mauritian version looks lovely!

    1. Oh I am so glad it brought back fond memories for you.

  3. Wow this looks so good, I would never think to put papaya in a curry but it sounds like a great idea.

  4. I am so glad this was tasty! I've never seen a recipe which substituted sweet ripe pink fleshed papaya with the green papaya I more often associate with savory (like the thai som tum) I can only buy green papaya from the markets some of the year, so perhaps I ought get adventurous and use the ripe ones I can buy at the supermarket :)

    1. Thanks Vyvyan. This was new to me and I did like it. Hope you get more adventurous.


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