Butternut squash, cauliflower and pomegranate tacos

Butternut squash, cauliflower and pomegranate tacos

but1.jpeg

Orange is the new everything. Why do all the good shows end way before winter and only start in spring, when there's other things to do besides eat tacos and watch Piper Chapman make an absolute idiot of herself? In any case, the big news over here in the hermitage is that the vegetable bag returned this week. What can I say, it's pretty wild life I lead. So I now have a fridge full of amazing mid-winter produce and a hankering for food that doesn't need cutlery so you can watch laptop screens more easily. I also need a new box set. Suggestions can be traded for tacos.

To make the smaller tacos, just find a bowl or mug that will fit twice on a tortilla wrap, and cut around with a sharp knife. I also used a large cookie cutter to make the even smaller tacos, which are perfect for snack-sized party food or with drinks. To stop from wasting too much of the tortilla, you can use a mix of both, like I did, to get the most out of each wrap.

but2.png

Makes enough for 4
 

Olive oil 

Salt and pepper 

1 cauliflower, stalks removed, chopped in to florets 

1 medium butternut squash, deseeded and cut into roughly 1cm chunks 

Seeds of half a pomegranate 

1 tin chickpeas, drained 

1 handful of parsley, chopped fine 

4 tortilla wraps, cut into two smaller circles each if you want a smaller taco

but3.jpeg

Start by preheating the oven to around 220 degrees celsius. In a small roasting pan, drizzle in olive oil, salt and pepper, and add in the cauliflower florets. Roast in the oven for about 20 minutes. 

In the meantime, start preparing your squash to roast too. Grab a bigger try and again drizzle over with olive oil, add salt and pepper, and finally mix in with the squash. Roast for 20 minutes also. Keep an eye on the cauliflower as it will burn easily and may need taking out before the squash. You don't want either to have blackened edges but to be soft and just cooked the whole way through.

While they're roasting, add the chickpeas, pomegranate seeds and parsley to a serving dish. Once the cauliflower and squash is cooked, stir into the mix and serve with warm tacos. Eat straight away. 

but4.png

Spiced squash and coconut soup

Spiced squash and coconut soup

image (31).jpeg

IT'S DECORATIVE GOURD SEASON GUYS, and everyone knows it's not truly autumn until the first squash soup gets dished up and demolished before anyone can even think about seconds.

Now I know there are 1001 recipes for squash soup out there, but this recipe has to be the best I've ever tasted. It is made from following the Creamy Butternut Squash Soup with Miso and Coconut recipe by Kenzi Wilbur at Food 52 (found here) .

I usually read through recipes that look interesting and know straight away what I will change to make it more to my tastes, but with this one, there was hardly anything I'd want to alter. So this is very much Kenzi's recipe that I'm sharing. I think I will use the amazing idea of miso stock for a base for soups loads this autumn, and the coconut cream in with squash recipes, so really this soup and its amazing flavours are just a starting point for the rest of the season!

n.b. Some of my friends did find the spices in the soup a bit dry/hot so if you aren't as fond as spicy food as I am then you might want to tone those flavours down a bit. 

image (32).jpeg

Makes enough for 4

Ingredients

Vegetable or olive oil

400ml water

1 tbsp Miso paste (make sure this doesn't contain any fish- I used Sainsbury's miso soup paste) 

2 1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1 inch ginger, grated

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 white onions, peeled and chopped small

1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped into 1 inch squares

1 acorn squash (or another medium-sized squash) peeled and chopped into 1 inch squares

Salt and pepper

Around 100ml of coconut milk to serve

image (33).jpeg

To make the miso stock, heat around 300ml of water in a pan, then mix the stock with the remaining 100ml of water, and whisk in with the rest of the water. I let this simmer away for about five minutes so it reduces a little. 

Heat some oil in a large pan and add the cumin, ginger and cayenne. Toast off the cumin seeds so you can smell the spices, then add in the onions and stir. Sweat the onions until they turn translucent, and add in a spoonful of the miso stock to stop anything burning.

Next, add in the squash and salt and pepper, along with the salt, pepper, and the rest of the stock. Allow to simmer for 20 to 30 minutes until all the squash pieces are super soft and cooked all the way through.

image (34).jpeg

Blend the soup with a hand blender or mixer to however smooth or chunky you like it, and then season to taste if it needs anymore salt or pepper. 

As the coconut milk is so rich I just added this right at the end after pouring in to bowls, although you may want to add more and stir through before serving. To finish, top with a bit more coconut milk and some cumin seeds. 

image (35).jpeg