Thursday, December 8, 2011

Delectable Delicata Squash

It's like Christmas morning for me when I open up my CSA box, and the other day, I received two colorful Delicata Squash.  I sadly forgot to take any pictures, but they are an oblong, yellow squash with green or orange vertical striping.  I don't want to steal other people's images, but if you're still curious, do a web search or check out your local market - they're in season in California right now!  

I love winter squash, but Acorn and Butternut have always been my staples.  The Delicata variety was new to me and I had no idea what to do with them, so I turned to the web to find a recipe to try.  I found many that sounded delicious, but I didn't want to go to the grocery store when I already had lots of produce at home, so I kept searching for a recipe that I could tweak to include what was in my kitchen: cauliflower, carrots, and half a can of coconut milk (left over from a Vegan Pumpkin Bread I made).  Below is what I came up with, and let me say that it was delicious with some coconut brown rice!  Sorry there are not any photos, the dish was very yellow and did not photograph well at all.

Oh, a word to the wise: when cooking with turmeric, use utensils that you don't mind getting stained.  It will turn everything it touches yellow.  For more info on turmeric's health benefits, see this article by Dr. Andrew Weil.

Coconut Curry Delicata and Cauliflower
(serves 2-4 people)

1/2 onion, chopped
2t minced garlic
2t minced ginger
1T olive oil
1 delicata squash, seeds scraped out, then diced (skin on)
1/2 head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 carrots, chopped 
2t cumin
2t turmeric
1t salt
1/4t black pepper 

dash of red pepper flakes (more if you like things spicy!)
1/2 can coconut milk
2T shredded coconut
1t lime or lemon juice

-In medium frying pan, heat oil. On medium heat, add onions, garlic, ginger & delicata. 
-Cook until onion becomes translucent, then add carrot and cauliflower. 
-Cook for about 4 min, with the lid on. 
-Add spices (up to the red pepper flakes in the recipe) and mix thoroughly until evenly coated. 
-Stir and cook for a minute, then add the coconut milk. Mix so that there is no more white from the coconut milk, the spices will change the color.
-On medium-low heat, put the lid on & cook for 5 min.
-Add the coconut milk, shredded coconut, and citrus of your choice. Stir & continue cooking, lid on, until squash & cauliflower are fork soft.
-Serve immediately over brown rice or quinoa (I cooked mine in diluted coconut milk) and enjoy!

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