At a time when cooking, cook books, restaurants and ingredients are so popular, when gadgets and gizmos are everywhere telling you how they will make our lives easier. It is easy to forget that there are two things that money can’t buy when it comes to making food taste amazing. Love and time. It can be love for the product, love for the person you are serving, love of cooking but there needs to be some feeling going into the preparation and you need time. It doesn’t matter how quickly you can cook a meal, it tastes better when you have set aside some time to prepare it. All over the world there are people who don’t consider themselves culinary geniuses taking time to prepare a nutritious meal for their loved ones. I know you all are yelling at me but I don’t have time! The great thing is that you can build meals that will work for the week. Like if you make a spaghetti bolognese sauce one night it can be the lasagne sauce later in the week. If you roast these ginger tomatoes for this salad they will be wonderful with another meal later in the week so make sure you make plenty. Try thinking ahead and using the meals ingredients as building blocks. With this recipe the meal is great on its own or a side dish. Can even be eaten cold for lunch.
1 butternut squash, peeled and cut in half lengthwise, seeds removed (we call this butternut pumpkin)
3 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper
6 plum tomatoes, halved
1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
1 small red chili, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, grated
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/2 cup/120 grams plain whole milk yogurt
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
Juice and finely grated zest of 1 organic lime
Handful fresh corianer or basil leaves
2 tablespoons roasted, chopped cashews
1 tablespoon fried shallots, optional
1. Preheat the oven to 465 F/240 C. Cut the squash in 1-inch slices and toss with two tablespoons of the oil, two teaspoons of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Spread out on a large, parchment-lined baking tray and roast for 35-40 minutes, until golden-brown. Set aside to cool.
2. Turn down the oven to 340 F/170 C. Put the tomato halves skin-side down on a parchment-lined baking tray, sprinkle with a quarter teaspoon of salt, drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of oil and roast for 80 minutes, until softened.
4. Put all the ingredients for the lime yoghurt in a small bowl, add half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper, mix well and put in the fridge until ready to serve.
5. Spread out the squash on a large platter and arrange the tomatoes in between. Drizzle over the yoghurt, sprinkle over the cilantro, cashews and shallots, if using, and serve.
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