Pumpkin has never been one of my favorite vegetables,especially the pumpkins that are available here during Halloween. There are very different in texture from the pumpkins that I was used to in India which were soft when cooked and mildly sweet. When I complained to a friend about the pumpkins here she asked to add a few tsps of sugar. But no amount of sugar was able to fix the stringy texture, until a chance encounter with butternut squash. It was the answer to the pumpkin prayer and has been a regular ever since. Never experimented much with it and have been quite satisfied with stir fry and the occasional sambhar. This was until it was paired with beans, let me tell you they are a perfect match. The nutty beans and the soft squash, you have to experience it. The trick though is not to overcook the beans. But that is never a problem with cow peas.
Cowpeas with brinjals is an all time favorite. The recipe is here. With rice and a dash of ghee mmmmm. Paired with butternut squash it does not disappoint. This dish can be used as a side for chapatis but I usually do not add tamarind.
This will be going off to Sra for MLLA-17.
Cowpeas with butternut squash
1. 2 cups of diced butternut squash (substitute with any squash/pumpkin)
2. 1 cup of cowpeas cooked (pressure cook for 3 whistles with twice the amount of water) or any beans
3. 1/2 medium red onion chopped (2 tbsps)
4. 2-3 green chilies slit
5. 3-4 garlic cloves - whole
6. 2 tomatoes chopped fine
7. seasonings: mustard seeds, curry leaves
8. 1 tbsp sambhar powder or the masala paste
For the masala paste
1. 1 tbsp onion chopped
2. 1/2 tbsp coriander seeds
3. 1 tbsp coconut
4. 3-4 red chilies
5. a few pepper corns
6. 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
saute the onions with a bit of oil, add the other ingredients other than coconut and let them saute for a few minutes. Add the coconut and give a good mix.
Cool and blend to a paste.
1. In a pan, heat oil and add the seasonings and then saute the onions till soft.
2. Add the garlic and green chilies and let them saute for a minute
3. Add the tomatoes and squash saute till tomatoes are soft.
4. Now add the cowpeas the masala paste or sambhar powder and a cup of water and salt and let simmer till desired consistency is reached, about 8-10 minutes
Serve with rice or any Indian bread.