Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Rainbow winter squash salad


I just got home from a bit of a quirky birthday weekend in Copenhagen. The only reason I am describing it as quirky is because on our last night, walking back from seeing Hunger Games things got a bit weird!
First we had to dodge a girl barfing on the street as her friend was cooking up some (rhymes with whack). Then I saw some old man's (rhymes with sock) while he took a very public wee, and then another old man snot rocketed narrowly missing my shoe. All this happened within 2 minutes of each other, I guess it served me right for renting a flat just a street away from the red light district. And can I just add that all those things did not even come close to what I saw a lady boy get up to in a bar at 4 in the morning…I can honestly say it was an eye opening trip!

Apart from all the nasties, Copenhagen really is one of the coolest places…I promise, just avoid one street! So many cool bars, restaurants, incredible shopping, pretty colourful houses and don't even get me started on their food market which was pretty overwhelming and I could have spent all day there! I picked up some very weird and wonderful little things from Grød, a porridge restaurant which was like Willy Wonker's factory and had amazing freeze dried berry goodies.
Also, I must say that Danish people are just about the friendliest people on the planet, and all speak perfect English which is extremely handy.

This recipe has absolutely nothing to do with my trip and isn't the slightest bit Danish inspired apart from the fact that it's colourful and wintery. Enjoy!

serves 4

1 butternut squash
2 red onions, peeled and quartered
1 tbsp coriander seeds, ground in a pestle and mortar
2 tbsp coconut oil or olive oil
2 cups pearl barley or brown rice
2 spring onions, washed an sliced
1 chilli finely chopped
small bunch or coriander, roughly chopped
half a pomegranate, seeded

Dressing
half a ripe avocado
juice of half a lime
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
mixed sesame seeds

Preheat your oven to 180˚C.

Peel the butternut squash, chop lengthways and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Then chop the  squash into half moon pieces about 1 cm thick. Put in a bowl with the melted coconut oil, ground coriander, onions and some salt and pepper and give it a good mix. Roast in the oven for about 45 mins until the squash is golden and cooked.

To cook the pearl barley, follow the packet instructions and about 15 mins before its ready add a teaspoon of turmeric to the water and then you barley will go all yellow and taste a bit more funky.
When it's ready it might look a bit like risotto from absorbing all the water, just drain it and give it a rinse under the cold tap.

Chop up the spring onions, chilli, coriander and put in a bowl with the pomegranate seeds.

Scoop out the flesh of the avocado and pureé with the lime juice, olive oil and salt and pepper. You can just do this by mashing together with a  fork or spoon until smooth.

Mix everything together and season to taste. Serve with some sesame seeds sprinkled on top.

Bon Appetit!

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