One of my favorite things about fall is the food – go figure! I love pumpkin and squash – they are so satisfying, nutritious and versatile!
This recipe works equally well with canned pumpkin or roasted mashed fresh pumpkin or squash – buttercup is my favorite for this recipe because of its density – but any will work.
I first tried creating this recipe for my husband who has recently gone to several meatless meals each week. My inspiration came from a recipe a friend made at deer hunting camp; very appropriately he made the recipe with venison. It was a hit! The spicy curry playing off the earthy sweetness of the squash is a warm nourishing way to fuel body and soul after a day in the great outdoors.
I enjoy this served over roasted cauliflower (recipe follows) – I serve it to my husband over brown rice.
2 tbsp (divided) safflower, canola or grapeseed oil (use something that is appropriate for high heat that is free of GMO)
1 onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, pressed or finely minced
2 tbsp curry powder
1/4 tsp red pepper flake
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground coriander
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes or 1 1/2 cups diced fresh tomatoes
1 – 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 – 15 oz can pumpkin or 1 1/2 cups diced fresh pumpkin or winter squash (such as buttercup, butternut or acorn)
3⁄4 cup vegetable stock
2 cans chickpeas or 3 cups cooked from dried (I find it very easy and cost-effective to cook my own beans. I soak them overnight and cook them in large batches. I freeze them in measured quantities covered in their cooking liquid – then have them on the ready for recipes like this!)
2 handfuls finely julienned kale or spinach (if using kale that has a thick mid rib – remove the mid rib, chop finely and salute along with the onion at the start of cooking.
If you like cilantro – it goes well in here – I don’t care for it so I leave it out. It’s one of those love it or leave it kind of flavors – you choose(:
Coarse sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat large dutch oven or soup pot over medium high heat. Meanwhile mix pressed garlic with 1 tbsp oil. Add 1 tbsp oil to heated pan. Add onion, sprinkle with a small amount of salt. Saute, stirring frequently for 3-5 minutes or until translucent and just beginning to brown. Stir in curry powder, red pepper flakes, turmeric, allspice and coriander to release their flavors – cook for about 30 seconds, then stir in garlic and oil mixture. Cook, stirring for an additional 30 seconds. Pour in tomatoes, tomato paste, vegetable stock, chickpeas and pumpkin. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes or until pumpkin is tender if using fresh. Finely stir in kale and allow to rest off heat for 5 minutes before serving to tenderize the kale. Serve over brown rice or roasted cauliflower. This also freezes well – making it ideal for make ahead lunches!
Recipe for Roasted Cauliflower
1 head cauliflower
high heat, non GMO oil for rubbing
rimmed baking sheet
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Trim off parts of the stem that you don’t care to eat. After washing it, pat dry and rub the head with a small amount of oil. Drizzle a couple of teaspoons onto the parchment lined sheet. Set the head of cauliflower on a cutting board, stem side down. Cut the head in half – lay each half on its flat side and cut each half into 4 wedges. The wedge shape gives nice flat surfaces to maximize browning and caramelization. Arrange wedge on the sheet so thick ends are towards the rim and skinny tips are towards the center – this will facilitate more even cooking. Loosely cover with a sheet of aluminum foil. Bake for 20 minutes. Turn each wedge and return sheet to oven without the aluminum foil and continue baking for another 20 minutes or until tender.
I often throw some carrots on the tray as well – they are such a treat roasted!