Spaghetti with Butternut Squash, Mushrooms and Broad Beans

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Butternut squash is a wonderfully versatile vegetable, especially tasty if you have vegetarian friends to dinner. Here is a simple and economical supper for family or friends to enjoy.

Dawn: Mmm! Butternut squash! Last seen here being roasted at Christmas.

Andrew: Here it is steamed to soften it up, then sautéed with the other vegetables.

Dawn: Steaming is a way of preserving all the vitamins in vegetables, which are so often just boiled away.

Ingredients

Serves 4

1 butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-1.5cm cubes

1 red onion, finely chopped

1 chilli (optional) deseeded and finely chopped

1 tsp of basil, oregano or herbes de Provence

1 clove garlic, crushed

1 red pepper, deseeded and finely sliced

100g mushrooms of your choice, sliced

200g frozen broad beans, defrosted

75 g spaghetti per person

1 tbsp ricotta, cream cheese or creme-fraiche

Olive oil for cooking

Salt and pepper to season

Andrew: It is possible to buy the butternut squash already prepared.

Dawn: However, it is more economical to do it yourself. Hard work if you don’t have a good peeler, but well worth it for the texture and taste.

Method

  • Steam the squash for 5 minutes. If you don’t have a fan steamer, a colander over a pan of simmering water, covered with a lid, will do just as well.
  • Allow the squash to cool otherwise it may burn of catch in the pan.
  • Put on a pan of water to boil, then add salt , and cook your spaghetti according to instructions while you cook the vegetables.
  • In a frying pan, heat a little olive oil on a medium heat, and fry the onion gently until it begins to turn transparent.
  • Add the garlic,chilli and herbs and allow the flavour to permeate the pan by moving them around. Don’t let the garlic burn.
  • Next the squash can be added keeping it moving so the cubes colour on each side.
  • Add the pepper and cook for a further couple of minutes so that it softens.
  • Now the broad beans may be added, squeezed out of their outer skins for a more jewel like quality or left for a bit more bite.
  • Allow to heat through, then add the mushrooms and cook until they are soft and golden to your taste.
  • Drain the cooked spaghetti, then add to the pan with the cooked vegetables and stir well.
  • Finally mix in the cheese or creme-fraiche and serve.

Dawn: What was the cost of this per portion?

Andrew: Just over £1.50 each I believe. Of course you can substitute other vegetables too.

Dawn: Economy and seasonality! Two of our buzz words!

Don’t forget we have great recipe ideas on https://forfoodlovers.wordpress.com all the time. You can follow us on Twitter @Love_Food_UK and on our Facebook page too. We are also on Mumsnet Bloggers Network.

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