Roasted Squash, asparagus and shrimp too!
This is almost a one dish meal, and it’s straightforward to prepare. One dressing for all three items!¼ cup mustard oil
10 or so slices of fresh ginger, using a potato peeler, finely chopped
4 fresh garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 to 2 Thai chilies, finely chopped
pinch of coarse salt
1 acorn squash, halved, seeds reserved
bunch of fresh asparagus, tough ends snipped off
enough shrimp to eat for this meal (shrimp won’t reheat well.)
7 curry leaves
1 tiny lime, juiced
Preheat oven to 350F. In a microwave proof glass cup, combine the oil, ginger, chillies, and garlic, and cook on high for one minute. Add salt.
On a cookie sheet, place the two squash halves facing upward. Poke the squash cavities with a fork and baste generously with the oil mixture, making sure to get lots of ginger, garlic and chili onto the squash. You’ll have lots left over, which you’ll use later. Because I’m a pumpkin seed lover, I keep the squash seeds, and baste the cookie sheet under where I’ll put them, then I baste them too.Roast in the oven for about forty minutes, till they are fork tender, but not quite completely soft. During this time I checked on them a couple of times, and basted everything again. Remove the sheet from the oven, and baste the sheet where the asparagus will go. Place the asparagus on the cookie sheet, and baste it generously. (You’ll still have lots of the mixture left over.)
Put the sheet back in the oven for another five minutes. Check the asparagus to see if it’s a little tender. You don’t want to reduce it to mush. If it’s almost done, turn off the oven, and put the heat on medium under a non-stick skillet. At this point, there won’t be much oil left in the mixture, but don’t worry. Add the mixture to the pan and cook gently for a minute or two. Add the shrimp and curry leaves, watching very carefully. Flip each shrimp as soon as it pinks up on the first side. Remove from heat as soon as they are all cooked through. (This takes very little time!) Pour lime juice over the shrimp. I had basmati rice on hand, as husband person likes rice with everything, but I found the squash removed my desire for rice. On the other hand, I got to have some of my roasted squash seeds, a type of vegetable caviar, as far as I’m concerned.This recipe is easy to prepare, and the vegetables have a mild but sweet flavour. The roasting time leaves the cook with ample opportunity to read a book or, in my case, watch a few missed episodes of Coronation Street. Oh, oh, did I just admit to that?