Thursday, October 11, 2007

Squash curry

There is a similar curry here, with a recipe. This is an outline of what I did last night, again using the excellent spices from Seasoned Pioneers.

I baked fork-sized pieces of squash (half of one), tossed in groundnut oil, with black cumin and ajowan seeds.

To give the curry some body, I simmered 50 g of yellow lentils, covered, in about double their volume of water with cayenne pepper. You need to keep checking so that the lentils absorb the water and become sludgy, without drying up. I stirred in a 40 g sachet of Biona creamed coconut.

I fried three onions, sliced (more on browning onions here). I threw in a chopped clove of garlic, along with 1 tsp of cardamom masala, and cooked this mixture for a couple of minutes. Now a really inauthentic touch: I poured in the leftover sauce from the oxtail stew. There was about 200 ml of it. I allowed this mixture to bubble, and tipped in the lentils and the squash, along with 1 tsp of garam masala. I salted the curry, and allowed it to simmer for five minutes.

My vegetable box last week included some chillis called, alarmingly, Ring of Fire. They are good, and do not have the effect on your rear end that they threaten. I chopped up two of them (without being too fussy about discarding the seeds and membranes), stirring them into the curry as a garnish.

This would have been enough for two, had I not been greedy.


pablopatito said...

Is there any difference between baking/roasting your squash, and steaming it? I made a curry last night where the recipe (by Nigel Slater) said I should steam the squash, fry onions, and add tomatoes. Instead I just put everything in the oven, and then added them to the curry sauce that I'd prepared on the hob (Thai green curry paste + coconut milk + stock) at the end. I even cooked the rice in the curry sauce to make even less washing up. It tasted great! Recipes rarely call for roasting vegetables, but I'm wondering what the difference is? Its easier to roast, I like the charred bits, and you don't have to keep stirring the onions to stop them catching.

Nicholas Clee said...

Some recipes for sweet potato mash, for example, tell you to boil the sweet potato first. I keep meaning to try that, but always bake the potato instead, because I fear that the boiled version will not have such a concentrated, sweet flavour.