Taste of the Week: Pumpkin Curry @ Bee’s Thai Kitchen

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John Lehndorff

Whenever I crave Thai food I end up in a food fight with myself. My brain demands curry, my head needs noodles, and my stomach craves fried rice. 

It’s especially hard to choose at Bee’s Thai Kitchen, a great Lafayette-based food truck. Bee Rungtawan Kisich grew up in northern Thailand and cooked at a Thai eatery before recently launching the truck with her family.

Bee’s Thai curry lineup includes panang, green, red, sweet pineapple, and pumpkin. Noodle dishes feature the three favorites—pad Thai, “drunken” noodles, and pad see ew, and then there’s Thai fried rice packed with lump crab meat or pineapple. That doesn’t include Bee’s stir fries, Thai omelet, satay, chicken wings, samosas, and sweet sticky rice. 

The creamy pumpkin curry with chicken won out. A steaming, terra cotta-hued sauce was packed with coconut milk and carefully sliced chicken, kabocha squash, carrots, and bell peppers. Infused with basil, shrimp paste, and chile, medium-hot was plenty zesty. Bee’s authentic cooking has those salty, tart, sweet, fiery, and funky notes that dance across your taste buds. Dished over jasmine rice, this is my idea of pumpkin spice. 

What to do with too many beets

Lists of America’s most hated foods inevitably include beets. I get an aversion to anchovies, but roasted beets are a sweet, savory, and nutritional powerhouse. Saute beet greens simply in olive oil with salt, garlic and ginger. 

 Farm intern Justin Winfield holds up freshly picked beets at the Aspen Moon Farm stand in Hygiene. (Credit: John Lehndorff)

(Boulder County’s farms, including Aspen Moon Farm (right) in Hygiene, grow diverse varieties of organic heirloom beets you can use in this recipe from CSU’s Extension Service. 

Roasted beet and chickpea salad

3 to 5 medium fresh beets

3 to 6 large garlic cloves, peeled and       chopped

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

Fresh rosemary (optional)

Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste

1½ cups chickpeas (15.5-oz. can), drained 

½ large red onion, peeled, sliced

½ cup roughly chopped dill pickles

About ½ lemon, juiced 

½ cup crumbled cotija or feta cheese

2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (dill, rosemary, chives)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Scrub beets, trim tops, and cut in bite-size pieces. Add beets, garlic, and fresh rosemary to baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss. Roast about 30 minutes, or until beets are fork tender. In a bowl combine beets, garlic, chickpeas, onion, pickles, lemon juice, and remaining olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper and mix well.

Sprinkle with cheese and fresh herbs.  

Culinary calendar 

The season’s final Wednesday Boulder Farmers Market is October 6, but the Saturday markets in Boulder and Longmont stay open through November 20. Besides corn, chiles, and tomatoes, end-of-season produce finds include garlic, melons, apples, black-eyed peas, peppers, Swiss chard, beets, tomatillos, tomatoes, green onions, and Italian parsley . . . Learn to make Argentinean empanadas, salsa roja, pan-seared flank steak, and chimichurri sauce October 15 at

Boulder’s Food Lab: foodlabboulder.com . . . Longmont’s Journey Culinary hosts an immersive Peruvian cooking class October 22 including music, culture and language with dinner: journeyculinary.com

Send information about local food events to: nibbles@boulderweekly.com