Perfect pumpkin: Pumpkin and green lentil tagine

November 6, 2013

Pumpkin Tagine

A couple of weeks ago when I walked by a huge pile of sugar pumpkins at the grocery, I couldn’t help myself. I picked one up. In the back of my mind I had this tagine on my mind – green lentils, chunks of pumpkin, spicy harissa paste. Luckily these little pumpkins keep for a while, so it was my sole Halloween decoration for a week or so, before I gutted it and made it dinner.

Sugar pumpkins have a similar texture to butternut squash, which would work just as well for this recipe. I expected the recipe to turn out super spicy due to the harissa, but when I started cooking I realized only a minuscule amount was called for. Of course, I fixed that! (more…)

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Impromptu weeknight meal

January 24, 2013

Butternut Squash Pita Pizza

Last week I made an amazingly tasty salad from arugula, butternut squash, and roquefort cheese. While the meal was missing just a little bit of crunch, there was no denying that the flavors were a great combination of sweet, pungent, peppery, and creamy. Since I had only used half the butternut squash and a little of the roquefort and arugula, I set out to make something else from this medley of flavors. Given the cold weather, I was really craving something warm and comforting. I was debating between a polenta dish or a pizza dish. Since the grocery store I stopped by on my way home didn’t have polenta or pizza crust, I was forced to improvise. (more…)

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Thanksgiving Produce Leftovers: Butternut Squash

November 28, 2010

Scallops with Butter Nut Squash

After a very blessed Thanksgiving with plentiful food on the table, I have a few leftovers in the fridge, and I’m not just talking about dressing and turkey. The Stuffed Pumpkin I made only needed half of a butternut squash, so today I’m faced with what to do with that other half.

Luckily, this is a pretty easy conundrum for me to face. One of my favorite ways to cook butternut squash is to roast it with a bit of salt until tender, then coat it with an oil flavored with pancetta and red chilis. And what goes better with pancetta then sea scallops? So I did a quick pan fry of those with just a little salt and pepper, and voila! Thanksgiving leftovers that weren’t very Thanksgiving at all.

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Caribbean Connection: Morgan Freeman and Friends Cookbook

September 10, 2010

Curry-Dusted Shrimp with Squash Choka

I’ll have to admit, when I first received the Morgan Freeman and Friends |Caribbean Cooking for a Cause cookbook, I was disappointed. I had seen him on one of the morning shows, promoting the book, and I had expected the book to be packed with recipes from islanders themselves. When I got the book, it was more about fancy hotels’ restaurants, and less about the simple island cooking, so it sat on my bookshelf for quite a while.

After a while, I started trying some of the recipes, though. First, a simple recipe, more like what I thought the book should be featuring, Pasta, Smoked Fish, and Cream. Then I ventured out a bit more and tried the Ital Soup. Then I decided to go the uber-fancy route, and make Chicken and Shrimp in a Pineapple Pontoon (a huge hit with my hubby, with an inspiring combination of flavors – orange and star anise… mmmm!). (more…)

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