This recipe is my ode to butternut squash. While its season has technically passed, thankfully, we still can find it in the produce sections of our favorite grocery stores.
Butternut squash is winter squash that tastes similar to pumpkin and is often puréed into soups. I have found, however, that this vegetable is great peeled, seeded, and cut up in bite-sized pieces, roasted in the oven, and eaten hot by itself or as a large side to a meal. It can also be mashed with a potato masher and eaten like that, after it’s roasted, boiled, or microwaved into a soft consistency.
With so many ways to eat this squash, there is no excuse to at least give it a try. It has a lovely nutty and sweet flavor, a beautiful color, and an excellent nutritional profile. It is a good source of fiber, vitamins A, C, and E, magnesium, and potassium—a veritable symphony of healthy vitamins and minerals!
So, before it disappears from our pantries and our food aisles until next season, I encourage you to join me as I celebrate its culinary delight in this delicious, low-fat curry recipe.
Butternut Squash and Chickpea Coconut Curry
(This a quick, stovetop version of Tasty Yummies “Butternut Squash and Chickpea Coconut Curry (Crock Pot Recipe)”)
• 1 small to medium sized butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1 inch cubes
• 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
• 2 cloves garlic
• 1 can (15.5 ounce) of chick peas
• 1 can (14.5 ounce) of organic, low sodium diced tomatoes
• 1 can (13.5 ounce) light coconut milk
• 1 cup low-sodium organic vegetable broth plus more for sautéing
• 2-3 tablespoons yellow curry powder (depending on taste)
• ¼ tsp turmeric (optional)
• Salt to taste
• 4-5 large handfuls of bagged spinach (you could also use 1 bunch of fresh spinach or kale)
• 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
• Shredded coconut for garnish (optional)
MY DIRECTIONS FOR STOVE TOP VERSION:
Preheat oven to 420 degrees and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Prepare butternut squash as directed above and place evenly on lined cookie sheet. Spray lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Place in oven and roast for about 40 minutes (until you see some browning) making sure to flip the squash halfway through so it cooks evenly. (This isn’t technically the “quick” way to prepare the butternut squash, but it’s my preferred way, as roasting brings out its flavor more.)
In a Dutch oven (or stock pan), sauté the onions in vegetable broth until clear. Add the cloves of garlic and sauté for a couple more minutes. Then, add the chickpeas, the can of diced tomatoes, the coconut milk, the cup of vegetable broth, and all the spices. Stir, bring to a boil, and then simmer while you wait for the butternut squash to finish roasting.
Once the squash is done, place it in the Dutch oven along with the peas and the spinach. Cook for several more minutes until the peas are cooked through and the spinach is wilted.
Serve it over some brown basmati or jasmine rice, or eat it by itself as you would a stew. Top with some shredded coconut.
Should you like a soupier consistency, add more broth. Or should you like this curry a bit thicker, mix a little cornstarch with some hot water and stir it into the sauce to thicken it.