I do love a bowl of beautifully spiced gorgeous vegetables, and recently I’ve become more and more adept at throwing together my own dishes based on all of the Indian recipes that I’ve made and read and eaten, so this was one of my recent creations..having been overwhelmed and a bit scared of recipes with great long lists of spices in the past, I now find that I absolutely relish them; I just love knowing that I’m adding so much flavour and goodness, and I love knowing what I’m doing!
Before I start cooking, I open my spice racks and get out everything I need or fancy adding, and then I collect all of the other ingredients I propose to use and have them all on the counter ready to go. That way there’s no darting around the kitchen grabbing stuff as I go along. I’ve learnt the hard way with that one!
So, here is my spiced butternut squash, which I ate on its own, with quinoa and even on a slice of sourdough!
1 large butternut squash, peeled and chopped into chunks
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
2 red onions, peeled and chopped
6 shallots, peeled and chopped
5 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp garam masala
2 tsp nigella seeds
2 tsp brown mustard seeds
4 brown cardamom pods
A few curry leaves
2 tbsp coconut oil
Note: feel free to use all red onion or all shallots; use your choice of oil; add some chilli powder or cayenne pepper if you like some additional heat.
Heat a large pan over a medium heat and add the coconut oil, once is has become liquid, add the mustard seeds and cardamom pods
Cook for a minute or so until the mustard seeds start to sizzle, but before they start to pop and fire all over the hob/stove (as I did recently!)
Add the red onions and shallots and cook on a low/medium heat for 20-25 minutes until soft and caremalising, stirring every so often
Add the chopped garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes
Add the turmeric, coriander, cumin, ginger and garam masala and cook for a minute, then put in a splash of water to loosen the spices from the pot
Add the butternut squash and tomatoes and onion seeds, stir well, and cook until the squash is soft. Add little amounts of water as you go along to stop the mixture from burning and sticking to the pan, and to cook the squash.
Towards the end, thrown in the curry leaves and cook for a few more minutes. And serve on its own, as a side dish, or however you fancy.
Or…then leave it to sit for a day and reheat and eat the next day. I think that most dishes with spices taste even better if you give them time to develop their flavours more.
All of my spices are from Spice Kitchen UK, they are such lovely quality, and the pack sizes are perfect. (I have not been asked or paid to tell you this, I just like to share great producers and I love this company and their ethos, as well as their spices!)