Simple pleasures

Game of Squash


Butternut squash is great to have around the kitchen. They normally hang around in mine for a while as I psych myself up to peel them. Fortunately, they keep for what seems an eternity, and can quickly become lunch when you are ready to battle with them. I like to sauté chunks of it in coconut oil and mix with chickpeas in a spiced tomato sauce. Here it’s used as the base for a vegetable salad and works really well with the slightly bitter radish and kale. If you can’t get barberries, use goji berries. The Parma ham gives crunch and saltiness and the dill cream brings a soothing calmness.
I like the surprise of fiery green chillies, but you can leave these out if you’re scared. And don’t forget the squash seeds. You may want to roast all of them separately and keep them in a jar for future use.

500g butternut squash, peeled and cut into smallish chunks
2tbsp of the squash seeds
2 cloves of garlic, bashed with a knife
1tbsp mustard seeds
A handful of curly kale leaves, depending on how big your hands are. Cut out the big stalks
4 slices of Parma ham
30g sour cream
2tbsp chopped fresh dill
20g dried barberries
1tsp chilli flakes or sliced green chillies
1 watermelon radish, cut into chunks
1/2tsp pink peppercorns, lightly crushed
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Heat the oven to 190c
Mix the squash, seeds, garlic, mustard seeds and olive oil together and season well.
Roast in the oven for 15 minutes, then toss through the kale and and curl through the Parma ham and cook for another 15 minutes or so, until the squash turns golden orange and the ham and kale become crisp.
Remove from the oven and leave to cool to room temperature
Mix the dill and pink peppercorns through the sour cream and add a little salt and pepper.
Add the radish to the squash, throw over the barberries and chillies, season a little and drizzle over some olive oil and the dill cream and serve.

2 Responses to “Game of Squash”

  1. Nicolas Ghirlando

    You can get watermelon radishes in Waitrose, they’re quite large for a radish, and look quite like a turnip. They’re bright pink inside. And yes, the dried pink peppercorns. X

  2. Julia Hetherington

    What’s a watermelon radish?
    Do you mean dried pink peppercorns or the wet ones in a jar?

    Julia Hetherington

    Hers Agency Ltd
    t. 01884 855 815

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