Saturday, October 22, 2011

Rigatoni with mushrooms in roasted butternut squash sauce

Fall's here. And with it, gusts of wind bringing a rain of gold and red. Leaves everywhere. Slight nip in the air.
The perfect time for butternut squash. We got a beautiful golden squash with nice glowing orange flesh. Ofcourse the first dish was butternut squash risotto. But the pasta sauce made with leftover roasted butternut squash turned out really mouthwatering slobberlicious.

Butternut squash
extra virgin olive oil (half a tsp or so)
Seasoning (Mix equal Onion powder,Garlic powder,Cumin powder, Oregano, Marjoram) about a tblspn for one squash
Garlic, chopped finely.
Mushrooms, chopped
Milk or cream ( I used milk but I think cream would be as good and make the sauce smoother)
Olive oil
Crumbled feta cheese

Cut squash into cubes and mix with oil and seasoning blend, spread on a baking sheet and roast at 375 F until cooked through.
Cool. Blend coarsely
Boil water, salt it and throw in the rigatoni
Meanwhile, in a pan, heat olive oil, add the garlic, add a pinch of salt.
Add the chopped mushrooms, salt it and fry until the edges of the mushroom are golden brown.
Add the butternut squash puree and milk/cream
Add chopped parsley
Check for pasta to be al dente, drain.
Add the sauce to the pasta, top with crumbled feta cheese.
Yum Yum.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

'Not fried' green tomatoes

Today a friend passed on to me great heirloom tomatoes from her absolutely lush garden. And I remembered a recipe from my pal from a long time ago. Maya's favorite accompaniment with rice, this was what she cooked most times for dinner. She would tell me in a story of self critical mirth that she made it only six days a week.

Maya's tomato chutney is a traditional recipe from Karnataka, from her mum's kitchen. Its usually made with ripe red tomatoes but I discovered today that it tastes fantastic with green ones! Here's my version. Delicious with hot fresh bread. Use as a spread with slices of cucumber, and you have a delectable sandwich.

Green tomato chutney

1/2 tablespoon oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp dry minced garlic
1 dry red chilli
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp paprika powder (more if you want it spicier)
salt to taste
1 tblspn urad dal or chana dal (split chickpeas)
A wee bit of sugar
1 cup chopped green tomatoes

In a pan, heat oil (med. heat) and add cumin seeds, fry for almost a minute until the seeds turn slightly brown. Add coriander seeds and the dry minced garlic and dry red chilli, fry for about a minute. Add the dal. Fry until the dal becomes golden brown, add the tomatoes. Add salt, sugar and paprika powder. Fry. Turn heat to low and cook well, about ten minutes at least. Let the mixture cool. Pour the mixture into a blender and blend into a paste. Keeps well for at least a week in the fridge.