It is the time of year of gourds. We eat them, we carve them, we see them all around.
They guard our doors like sentries.
You can use any orange fleshed gourd – whether it be pumpkin or squash. I chose – not because I was already sick of pumpkin – but because of its sweet orange thick flesh – the kabocha squash.
If you want less of a work out – choose pumpkin or another softer squash – because the kabucha is a bit hard and caused me great frustration to skin, cut and cube. But alas, I succeeded from sheer will.
The first step of this recipe is actually to make your own curry powder.
Start by toasting whole coriander, fennel, and cumin together with ground tumeric and chili pepper. After a light toasting grind the spices in a coffee/spice grinder and you will have your curry powder. It is easier than you think as long as you have the spices lying around.
2 Tbsp whole coriander seeds
1 Tbsp cumin seeds
1 Tbsp fennel seeds
1 Tsp ground red chili powder
1/2 Tsp ground tumeric
Step 1: Place all the spices in a large pan (big enough that they can be in a thin layer).
Step 2: Cook the spices over medium-low heat. Stir them often and cook until they turn color and emit a nice scent.
Step 3: Let cool and grind in a coffee/spice grinder.
Congratulations you have your own curry powder.
Now that you have your curry powder it is time to make the actual recipe. Start by heating a couple tablespoons of oil in a large pan or wok. Once the oil is hot add black mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves.
Heat all of these until the mustard seeds pop and the curry leaves emit a nice savory aroma. Now it is time for your onions, garlic and curry powder.
Follow the browning of all of the above with your pumpkin/squash and two cups of water to simmer until soft.
Roughly 20 minutes or so later you will have soft squash and its time to add the coconut milk and spinach. Simmer for a little bit longer then enjoy.
Curry powder recipe above
4 cups of cubed squash or pumpkin (1 medium squash or pumpkin)
2 cups water
1 cup coconut milk
1 package of frozen spinach or 3 cups tightly packed fresh
2 Tbsp canola oil
1/4 Tsp black mustard seeds
1/4 Tsp cumin seeds
6-8 curry leaves
1 diced medium onion
4 minced garlic cloves
Step 1: Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves. Cook until the mustard seeds pop and a nice scent emits from the cumin and curry.
Step 2: Add the onions and garlic and cook until the onions brown – then add all of the curry powder you made and stir.
Step 3: Add the 4 cups of cubed squash and stir until the squash is covered in curry spices – then add the 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce heat and cover -cook until the squash is soft. (15-20 minutes).
Step 4: Once the squash is soft add the coconut milk and return to a boil – then add the frozen spinach or fresh spinach. Cook until fresh spinach wilts or if using frozen when the mixture returns to a boil.
Serve with quinoa and enjoy – Happy Halloween!