This warming autumn curry is packed with spices and lots of in-season veg. Butternut squash is an excellent source of beta-carotene which acts as an antioxidant that helps protect our cells from free radical damage, and is converted in the body to vitamin A which supports our vision. It is also a good source of vitamin C which helps support the immune system. Cavolo nero (or black kale) is another powerful antioxidant and is a good source of iron and vitamins A, C and K.
1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
2. To speed up cooking I like to pre-cook some of the vegetables. Peel the butternut squash, cut into small chunks and spread out onto a baking tray. Slice the aubergine into chunks and add to the same tray. Drizzle over some of the oil, salt and pepper and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.
3. After 20 minutes, add a drizzle of oil to a deep pot on a medium heat. Chop the onion and add to the pot, cook until soft.
5. Chop the garlic and add to the pot along with the spices, red wine/apple cider vinegar and tomato puree. Cook for 1-2 minutes until bubbling and a paste forms (add a little coconut milk if its too dry).
6. Add the tin tomatoes and coconut milk to the pot, along with the mushrooms and the butternut squash and aubergine from the oven. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
7. Whilst the pot is simmering, this is a good time to prepare the brown rice if cooking from scratch (alternatively use a precooked rice packet). Place the rice into a sieve (roughly 75g uncooked rice per person) and rinse under cold water until the water runs clear (this helps remove loose starch so the rice will be less sticky). Bring a large pan of water to the boil and stir in the rice. Bring to a medium boil and boil for 25-28 minutes.
8. Once the stew has been simmering for 20 minutes, chop the cavolo nero and coriander stalks and add to the pot. Drain and rinse the butter beans and add to the pot. Cook for a further 10 minutes.
9. Drain the rice and serve with 2 ladles of stew, chopped fresh coriander leaves, a dollop of yogurt and toasted pitta bread.
Time: 1 hour 15 mins
2 tbsp oil (rapeseed or extra virgin olive oil)
1 white onion
1 butternut squash
1 bag cavolo nero (or kale)
Half punnet or 125g mushrooms
1 tin butter beans (400g)
2 tins tomatoes (plum or chopped)
1 tin coconut milk
4 cloves garlic
1 tbsp turmeric
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 tsp chilli powder or 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp tomato puree
Bunch coriander stalks
Pinch of salt and pepper
Brown rice (75g uncooked p/p)
Bunch fresh coriander leaves