Breadfruit curry or banbukeyo bongara is a very popular dish among Maldivians. Originally it is a very hot curry with the use of dried red chillies being the main star of this dish. It’s certainly not to the faint hearted. But fear not, I have adjusted the heat by reducing the amount of chillies to make it on a low-medium heat level. Feel free to adjust the spice level according to your taste. It goes well with rotis and rice too.
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes
- 750 grams breadfruit or half a bread fruit
- 5 cups of water
- 1 vegetable stock cube
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 1×10 cm pandan leaf
- 1/2 cup Maldivian smoked tuna, thinly sliced
- 1/2 habanero chilli or to taste
- 1 tablespoon Maldive fish paste if available
- 1/3 cup coconut milk powder dissolved in 1 cup of hot water or use fresh coconut milk
- Peel and remove the core of the breadfruit.
- Cut into bite sized pieces.
- Wash thoroughly and put in a medium sized heavy based pan.
- Add the 5 cups of water, vegetable stock powder, salt, curry leaves and pandan leaf.
- Place on medium high heat and cook for about 30 minutes or until soft.
- While the breadfruit is cooking make the curry paste.
- 1 large onion roughly chopped
- 3 tablespoons desiccated coconut
- 5 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 1×2 cm piece of ginger
- 3 dried red chillies chopped
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1 teaspoon chilli powder
- Blend all of the above ingredients with 1/2 cup of water in a small food processor until smooth.
- When the breadfruit is soft, add all of the curry paste, to the pan followed by 1/2 cup Maldives smoked tuna sliced, 1/2 habanero chilli, and 1 tablespoon Maldive fish paste if using and continue cooking over medium heat, stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes or so.
- Add 1/3 cup of coconut milk powder mixed with 1 cup of hot water, cook stirring for another 5 more minutes.
- Take off heat.
- Serve with roti or rice.
Note: For a vegetarian version omit the tuna and fish paste.
Styling tip: Fry some curry leaves and scatter across the curry to add texture and to make it more enticing to look at. Serve with breadfruit chips for an extra crunch!