Seeing as how it is National Curry Week, which of course I was completely aware of at the start of the week...I decided to make this delicious Butternut, Spinach and Peanut Curry. Truthfully, I didn't have the foggiest idea that it was National Curry Week until I stumbled upon the hashtag on twitter but, rather conveniently I had already whipped up this mighty fine recipe after stumbling upon it on the delicious. website and having the slightly worrying peanut butter addiction that I do, I instantly thought my doesn't that sound autumnal and scrumptious and rest assured, it really is!
For my Food Technology GCSE which, was over and done with a full 5 years ago now (boohoo what an old lady I am), I developed a peanut satay dish which my lovely mum and I fell madly in love with at the time but, I have since grown to feel that it can often be a little on the heavier, richer side which isn't necessarily a bad thing but, it really must be eaten in moderation even by this peanut butter addict right here. This Butternut, Spinach and Peanut curry on the other hand, is much lighter and yet the sauce still remains utterly moreish and creamy and the Thai flavours of the dish really come through and taste devilishly divine (little Halloween pun for you there). Unlike the delicious magazine recipe, I added butternut squash to my curry instead of pumpkin as, shock horror, I couldn't locate a pumpkin despite Halloween being virtually upon our doorstep. I know, how utterly ridiculous right? Nonetheless, the butternut squash was delicious in this dish and my own addition of red pepper and spinach was also a most excellent choice if I do say so myself. Pair this curry with some basmati or Thai Jasmine rice, scatter with fresh coriander leaves and you really have treated yourself to quite a phenomenal little autumnal dish to warm you up on a cold October night.
2 tbsp. peanut butter
1 tsp. tomato purée
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1 tbsp. light soy sauce
1 tsp. light brown sugar
Small handful fresh coriander
2 red chillies, halved and deseeded
4 garlic cloves
1cm piece fresh ginger
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 red onions, cut into thin wedges
300g butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and chopped into chunks (not too big!)
200g red pepper, core and seeds removed
100g frozen spinach
400ml tin coconut milk
1. Stir the peanut butter into a jug containing 200ml hot water, until it dissolves, then stir in the tomato purée, lime zest and juice, soy sauce and brown sugar and set aside.
2. Remove the leaves from the coriander and set aside as well. Chop the stalks as finely as you can and chop up the chilli, garlic and ginger nice and small too.
3. Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or good-sized pan and fry the onions quite briskly for a few minutes, so that they catch slightly. As soon as this starts to happen, add the butternut squash and red pepper and stir-fry for a few minutes.
4. Stir in the chilli, garlic, coriander stalk, garlic and ginger mixture for 1-2 minutes, then add in the lovely creamy coconut milk. Stir once more, then add the peanut butter mix and cook at a brisk simmer for 20-30 minutes, adding the frozen spinach half way through, until the sauce has thickened slightly, the spinach is cooked and the butternut squash is tender. (Just a pre-warning, I almost keeled over with starvation as the clock struck 8pm waiting for my butternut squash to soften so make sure you give yourself plenty of time for cooking and preparing the dish, about 45-60 minutes I'd say before tea as the pesky squash likes to take it's time but, it does make up for it at the end when you finally get to take a mouthful and realise the wait was most definitely worth it!)
5. Finally, garnish with the reserved coriander leaves and serve with cooked rice. Basmati rice or Thai Jasmine would be perfect! All done and dusted, now enjoy!