Mrs. Jackson Cooks

Life through food

What to do with squash – make curry, of course!

on December 23, 2010

Well Thai red curry, to be precise.

As anyone will tell you, I currently have a bit of an obsession with discount vouchers.  One of them recently was 2 weeks of fresh vegetables delivered from a farm in Wigan.  And the first of the 2 weeks was delivered the other day and included some odd looking squashes.

Now, I’m not against squash per se.  Not overly keen on pumpkin, although I’ll eat it, but I do quite like a nice butternut squash.  I don’t tend to buy squashes that often though – it just doesn’t really occur to me.  However, I think that’s what’s so great about having a vegetable delivery which is local – it’s seasonal vege at its best and you don’t have to think about what vege you want, you get what you’re given and in the process find some great new recipes!

Now, of course there’s squash risotto, squash soup, squash casserole – the possibilities are endless.  But at the time Thai curry seemed like a good idea.  I found the recipe on the BBC’s good food website here

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2631/thai-squash-and-pineapple-curry

I think possibly I was attracted to it because it had pineapple in it, and I had half a can of pineapple languishing in the fridge that needed using.

Red curries are one of the milder Thai curries, although I am using ‘milder’ generously as Thai’s don’t really understand food without lots of chili in it.  But compared to green curries, reds are definitely milder.  Yellows are milder still.  If you’re worried about the level of spice, use less curry paste and exclude the fresh chillis.  If you like spicy food, then go for it, but do be careful with the paste – especially if it’s from a chinese supermarket, they’re pretty strong.

As this is a vegetarian recipe I was wondering what to do to get some protein in the dish.  I considered chickpeas and lentils but decided they were more Indian than Thai, and then I thought – what do Thai’s do for protein (apart from tofu)?  Eggs, of course!  Now, I could have made a fried egg to go on top, but I decided that was a little unusual for a curry, so I scrambled an egg and tossed it in the rice instead.  Now, if you’re vegan, that’s not such a great idea and maybe in the circumstances chickpeas would be a good option but if you’re not vegan than eggs are a great option.

You could also add toasted cashews or chopped toasted peanuts.  That would add protein.

I used a whole can of coconut milk, only because when I use half a can the remaining half tends to go mouldy in the fridge before I get round to using it.  But if you’re being healthy, then use half and try to get low fat as coconut milk is very high in fat and calories and add in the stock as suggested in the original recipe.

This however, is the recipe as I adapted it.

Thai Red curry with squash and pineapple

Serves 2

1 tbsp oil (I used chilli oil)

1 onion, finely chopped

1 tbsp thai red curry paste (or make your own).  If using chinese supermarket brands (eg suree or may ploy) then 1 tbsp is enough.  If using normal supermarket or sharwoods or similar then you may want 2 tbsp.

1 squash, of about 300g

1 can (400ml) coconut milk

75g green beans (or approximately a large handful)

1/2 can pineapple chunks or rounds cut into pieces

2 red chillis sliced (de seed if you don’t want to spicy)

handful of chopped fresh coriander

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or wok.  When it’s hot, add the onion and fry until browned.
  2. Add the paste to the pan and fry until softened and combined with the onion.
  3. Add the squash and fry for a further couple of minutes, before adding the coconut milk.
  4. Turn the pan down to a low simmer and cover.  Keep checking the curry isn’t sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  5. After 10 minutes, add the green beans, pineapple and chillis.  Add a bit of water if the sauce is becoming too thick or dried.
  6. Continue to cook until the squash is cooked through – about 20-25 minutes.
  7. Throw in the coriander, stir well and serve on a bed of rice or noodles (rice is better in this instance I think), possibly with added egg!
  8. Enjoy!
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