Sunday, March 21, 2010

curry-roasted butternut squash and chickpeas

This dish was initially conceived as an “Indian twist” on a Thanksgiving side. And, while I’m in no hurry to see it on my holiday table (for me, gravy-compatibility is a Thanksgiving prerequisite), I would happily eat it just about any other night of the year.

Curry-Roasted Butternut Squash and Chickpeas
Adapted from Food & Wine

Floyd Cardoz’s bhoondi raita made a perfect substitute for the cilantro-yogurt sauce recommended below, but this one does quite well in a pinch.

2 large butternut squash (5 1/2 pounds)—peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch dice
One 19-ounce can chickpeas—drained, rinsed and dried
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon mild curry powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 cups plain whole-milk yogurt
3/4 cup finely chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl, toss the butternut squash with the chickpeas, olive oil, curry and cayenne and season with salt and pepper. Spread the squash cubes on a large rimmed baking sheet and roast for 1 hour, or until tender.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir the yogurt with the cilantro and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.

Spoon the roasted butternut squash and chickpeas onto a platter and drizzle with 1/2 cup of the yogurt sauce. Sprinkle with cilantro, and serve the remaining yogurt sauce on the side.

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