What should be a time to get together with family and friends and revel in each other’s company has turned into a stuff-your-face, meat-heavy food fest. Don’t get me wrong. I love Thanksgiving as much, if not more, than the next gal. And, if we’re going for full disclosure here, I am a turkey fiend.
I count down the days to that fourth November Thursday with intense anticipation, getting more and more excited with the dropping of each new leaf. Pumpkins, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes. You really can’t go wrong at the Thanksgiving table. Unless, of course, you’re a vegetarian.
Which I am not. I do have a number of friends who are, though. It really breaks my heart to see them sit down to a meal and have to nibble at the bread and load their plates with green beans because there’s nothing they can eat. Usually someone’s made enough side dishes so that the vegetarians don’t go to bed hungry, but there are times when even the brussels sprouts are peppered with cubes of pancetta and the stuffing is full of sausage. Those who refrain from meat are left starving.
This curry is the answer to your meatless Thanksgiving woes. It has all the flavors of fall, courtesy of the butternut squash, without being boring. Because if I see one more stuffed acorn squash, I might scream.
Hayley Daen is a sophomore at the University of St Andrews, where she lives in a dinky apartment right across from Tesco, which makes throwing impromptu tea parties a snap.
Butternut Squash Curry
1 (14 ounce) can light coconut milk
2 tablespoons red curry paste
3 spring onions, chopped
2 cups spinach leaves, packed
1/4 teaspoon garam masala
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 small butternut squash, peeled and cubed
Salt, to taste
Heat a large frying pan over medium heat. Skim the thick, creamy layer off the top of the coconut milk and add it to the pan along with the curry paste. Stir until combined. Add spring onions, spinach, spices, and remaining coconut milk. Bring to a boil and add butternut squash. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until squash is just tender. Serve over fluffy white rice.