Flowers and Florets

by on December 13, 2006
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Roasted Delicata Squash and CauliflowerBefore I jump right into the recipe, I just wanted to say that if you’re a Mississippi vegetarian, you missed a great get-together last Saturday. Seven adults and four children gathered at the High Noon Café for delicious food (I recommend the Blue Bowl with peanut sauce) and lots of conversation. If you’re a vegetarian anywhere near the Jackson area, do consider joining us for our next event. Being a vegetarian in Mississippi can be isolating, and you just don’t know what a great feeling it can be to share experiences with other vegetarians until you do. Contact me by email and I’ll tell you how you can get on our discussion list.

Now, about those Flowers and Florets. Last night I decided to roast delicata squash and cauliflower together and then toss them with a curry sauce. I probably should have chopped the squash into cubes, but I just couldn’t do that to something so beautifully shaped. So I sliced the squash instead, hoping for a daisy-like shape, and it worked pretty well, but cubes would have been easier to mix with the sauce. The wonderful thing about delicata squash is that no matter how you slice it, the skin is edible. I kept the seasoning light in this recipe to complement–not overpower–the sweet taste of the roasted vegetables.

Roasted Delicata Squash and Cauliflower

Roasted Delicata Squash and Cauliflower with Curry Sauce

In this recipe, I use coconut water, which I find in the “ethnic” section of the supermarket. The only kind I can find is sweetened, but unsweetened varieties do exist. It lends a very light coconut taste to the sauce but is really not essential. I just had a can open and decided to use it; apple juice and water should work as well.

1 delicata squash or other small winter squash (about 1 pound)
1 head cauliflower
canola oil spray
black pepper
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon canola oil
1/2 tablespoon good curry powder (homemade or store-bought, to taste)
1/2 cup coconut water or 1/4 cup apple juice mixed with 1/4 cup water
salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 400F. Oil or spray a large rectangular baking dish.

Prepare the squash by peeling it (not necessary with delicata, but necessary for all others), removing the seeds, and slicing it or cutting it into 1/2-inch cubes. Cut the cauliflower into medium-sized florets. Place squash and cauliflower into the baking dish, mist them with canola oil, and sprinkle with freshly-ground black pepper. Put into the oven. Bake for 15 minutes, stir, and check for doneness. Check again every 5 minutes until squash is tender–a fork should be able to pierce it easily, but it is not falling apart. Remove from oven and toss with sauce (below).

While the vegetables are roasting, sauté the onion in a little water or broth over medium heat until it becomes translucent. Add the garlic and sauté one minute more. Pour in the oil and immediately add the curry powder. Stir and cook for 30 seconds, and then add the coconut water or apple juice/water mixture. Stir well and add the roasted vegetables. Add salt to taste, toss to coat well, and serve. Serves 2-3 people.


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