This weather has been so all over the place lately that it makes it difficult to meal plan. Okay the truth is that I’m not much on meal planning, our Midnight Tokyo Diner nights have been working out incredibly for the past few years so we get tons of ingredients, many of them fresh and then pantry staples, and then we can decide from one night to the next.
But with food shortages and shipping delays it’s harder and harder to get what you expect to find in the grocery stores in April. For example, there has been a TON of butternut squash lately which I love, but for me it usually means soup like, Squash & Lentil Stew. Or cookies. Or cake. Those are my go to recipes for squash, but sometimes I feel creative and make Vegan Spinach & Squash Queso Dip or Squash Blondies.
But I wasn’t in the mood and the weather was just insane. It was super warm and we went for a long walk without jackets one day and the next it was gray and gloomy and super chilly. And the only thing to like about a cold and gloomy day is cold weather vegan food. Chili and soups and stews and casseroles are all great vegan meals when the temperature dips and I knew when The Hubs asked for cauliflower curry, exactly what I would do.
Roasted Cauliflower & Butternut Squash Curry
This isn’t a quick vegan dinner but the good news is that the oven does most of the work.
Gather your ingredients:
Start with the squash. Scrub it and cut it in half lengthwise. rub the skin part with coconut oil (or whatever you have) and roast it on 200C/400F for 20 to 30 minutes with the flesh side down.
Next, it’s time to tackle the cauliflower. I cut it into big chunks because that’s my favorite way to eat cauliflower. If you don’t make oil free vegan recipes, toss the cauliflower in oil. Usually I prefer yogurt but this go ’round I used mustard. Just regular yellow mustard, not with horseradish.
Season cauliflower with red curry, ground ginger, turmeric, cumin, smoky paprika and garam masala, plus salt & pepper. Pop it in the oven on a different shelf than the squash for about 25 minutes or until tender.
In the meantime…
Chop and weight the onion, garlic, ginger, bell peppers and tomatoes. A rough chop is fine because these are going right into the food processor until tiny bits remain. If you have a powerful processor go until you can get a paste.
Add the paste to a skillet over medium-high heat and start cooking. Season with salt and pepper for the first 5 to 10 minutes of cooking. Go slowly here because you don’t want to burn anything and you really want to develop those flavors.
When the squash is cooked and cool, scoop it out and mash it up and slowly add it to the skillet with the vegetables. It will be thick at first but once it’s all mixed together, add coconut milk or almond milk (or your favorite plant milk) slowly to help thin out the mixture.
When it’s thin enough, add the chickpeas and tomato paste. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
Then start on the rice, following package instructions.
When the curry is thick and fragrant, the cauliflower and rice are done, it’s time to plate it up.
Garnish with parsley, Sriracha and/or fresh sliced jalapeno peppers. Enjoy and rub your belly afterwards!
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