Another way to use up those Halloween pumpkins; this time, their velvety sweetness is spiked with zingy Thai flavours and served with a vegetable ceviche. There are a whole array of flavours and textures to wake up the taste buds!
Ceviche – it’s actually a seafood dish – but to me, is synonymous with macerating anything in lime really. It’s incredibly easy to make, although there are probably more complex versions, but all you need here is a sharp knife or preferably a mandolin, some crunchy vegetables (use pepper if you don’t like fennel) and some lime juice.
The pumpkin or butternut squash’s cooking time will depend on the power of your oven, the size of the chunks of vegetable (technically it’s a fruit!) and of course how well done you like your roasted vegetables. I have suggested 40-50 minutes as I do not like it overly charred – and oily – for this recipe as everything else is so light and fresh. I pre-cook members of the squash family first to make light of peeling: slice the squash or pumpkin in half first, oven bake it (as you would with a jacket potato) for 20-30 minutes until the skin becomes baggy and wrinkly, enabling you to swiftly peel it away from the flesh. Remove the seeds, chop into chunks and roast for another 20 minutes with the onion and cashew nuts.
Ingredients (2 generous servings/serves 4 as a starter)
1 red onion
½ a red cabbage
½ a fennel (optional)
1 butternut squash or pumpkin
Oil to roast
Cashews (to garnish)
Coriander (to garnish)
1-2 crushed cloves of garlic
1-2 red chillies
½ can of coconut milk
Juice of 1 lime
About a teaspoon of grated ginger
Pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 200 (fan)/220 (conventional)
- Get going with the ceviche first. Slice the vegetables as thinly as you can and put in a bowl.
- Squeeze the limes, pour the juice over the vegetables and add a pinch of salt. Give it a quick stir (or use your hands) and leave to one side.
- The pumpkin/squash needs to roast for about 40-50 minutes in total. Peel (either use the part-cooking stage described in the introduction or your own preferred method), remove seeds and slice into chunks and oven bake in a roasting tin/dish.
- Add the sliced onion and the cashew nuts to the pumpkin and continue roasting for another 20 minutes. Don’t forget to salt. (I usually do this towards the end of the cooking process as the salt can draw too much moisture out of the vegetables).
- For the dressing, simply pop the ingredients into a blender and whizz. If you don’t have a blender, just slice the chillies as finely as possible and combine with the crushed garlic and grated ginger and stir/shake vigorously with the lime juice, salt and coconut milk. Remember to shake the can of coconut milk well first, in case the milk has separated.
- Once the pumpkin is done, either combine everything – or serve the ceviche as a side dish. Spoon the coconut dressing over the squash – you’ll probably have some leftover – and scatter over the cashews and coriander.
Try M&S Mineralstein Riesling, an off-dry, aromatic white to stand up to the spice, yet delicate enough to avoid overpowering the crunchy vegetables.