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Curried Chicken Stew with Squash and Cashews

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4

Sweet, deeply colored buttercup and kabocha squash are the top choices for this aromatic stew. If neither squash is available, use sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks.


  • 1 13-1/2-oz. can coconut milk, unstirred
  • 2 Tbs. Thai red curry paste
  • 3 Tbs. fish sauce
  • 2 Tbs. packed light brown sugar
  • 1 lb. peeled buttercup or unpeeled kabocha squash, seeded and cut into 1-1/4-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup salted cashews
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 small yellow onion, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 2/3 cup torn fresh basil leaves

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 490
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 280
  • Fat (g): 31
  • Saturated Fat (g): 20
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 6
  • Cholesterol (mg): 65
  • Sodium (mg): 1560
  • Carbohydrates (g): 28
  • Fiber (g): 3
  • Protein (g): 30


  • Measure 3 Tbs. of the thickened cream from the coconut milk and put it in a 6-quart pot. Whisk in the curry paste and cook over medium-high heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture is fragrant and slightly darker, about 5 minutes. Stir the coconut cream and milk remaining in the can until well combined and add to the pot along with the fish sauce, brown sugar, and 1 cup water; whisk until combined. Bring to a simmer and add the squash. Partially cover, turn the heat down to medium, and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, until the squash is almost tender, 8 to 12 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, toast the cashews in a small skillet over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until dark in spots, about 4 minutes. Set aside.
  • Season the chicken with salt and add it and the onion to the pot, stirring gently to separate the chicken pieces. Return to a simmer, partially cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and the squash is tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cashews and basil and serve.

Serve with jasmine rice, if you like.


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Reviews (6 reviews)

  • Hassab | 07/31/2020

    I love discovering things like this with Fine Cooking that are quick, tasty, and versatile. I already had the sauce simmering before I realized I didn't have the squash or the cashews, but the sauce itself is so tasty it seems like you could use it with almost anything. This time I did potatoes, peanuts, and leftover roast chicken but I love the previous poster's ideas of pumpkin and sweet potatoes. I'll keep this one on hand!

  • user-3164399 | 12/13/2019

    Very good! I served over rice in a big soup bowl. Made the mistake of letting the chicken cook too long in the pot. Best if you really give it just 5 or so minutes.

  • NikkiR | 12/15/2013

    We loved this! Quick, easy and delicious. I made it with leftover roast chicken and kabocha squash and upped the heat with a bunch of samba oelek at the end. I thought the cashews were a great addition.

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