Seduced by the beauty of their ghostly, pale, grey-green skins and the plump rounded curves concealing burnt orange flesh beneath, I have left several of my ‘Invincible’ Pumpkins untouched because they are simply too beautiful to eat! But this season’s crop is starting to plump up in the Kitchen Garden and it really is time to cook and enjoy last years harvest.
I cut into one and experience such a powerful rush of pleasure as I see the warm orange edged by the narrow slither of cool green skin on every slice. This Pumpkin is still amazingly fresh and good!
There is something so totally wholesome and pleasurable about growing and eating your own, home grown Pumpkin or Squash. I want to make something which celebrates its fabulous colour and flavour and, in the case of my one year old pumpkins, their longevity!
I make a salad dish which includes-‘Yellowstone’ Carrot puree, Cauliflower puree, roasted ‘Invincible’ Pumpkin and roasted ‘ Marmande’ Tomatoes, Spiced chickpea salad, all garnished with ‘Graffiti’ Cauliflower, Thyme flowers and drizzled with a golden rapeseed oil vinaigrette.
Happy Birthday INVINCIBLE PUMPKIN and thank you for being such a long keeper!
This dish would be quite daunting to make if you had to create all the various components on the same day. So I always prepare my purees in advance and keep them in the freezer. Once you have roasted the Pumpkin and Tomatoes they keep very well in the fridge and the Chickpea salad is very quick to make and uses tinned ingredients. Please do not worry if your roasted vegetables take longer to cook than the times stated in the recipes. I had to cover my my carrots with foil and add a little stock at the beginning of their cooking time to encorage them to cook through.
You will be rewarded by fabulous flavour, amazing colour and lots of compliments when you serve this dish…I promise!
Spicy Chickpea Salad
1 x 400 gram tin of Chickpeas (drained)
½ x 400 gram tin of Lentils (drained)
200 grams of cooked Basmati Rice
2 tsp Tomato puree
3 tblsp Rapeseed Oil
2 tsp Lemon juice
½ tsp ground Turmeric
½ tsp ground Cinnamon
½ tsp ground Ginger
½ tsp Cumin Seed
½ tsp ground Cumin
½ tsp ground Star Anise
Simply mix together and serve
Roasted Carrot Puree
2lbs /1 kg vegetables
1 Onion or a handful of shallots peeled and cut into chunks
2 tblsp oil
1 tblsp chopped fresh Thyme
Salt and Pepper
Vegetable or chicken stock
- Chop the vegetables into 1 inch chunks and toss in the oil
- Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the Thyme
- Place in a roasting pan and roast in the oven 425 F or 220 C for about 45 minutes
- Puree in a food processor with a little stock and a knob of butter until smooth.
- Taste and correct seasoning
- Keep in the refrigerator or freeze.
Simply cook Cauliflower florets in chicken stock until tender. Then puree in a processor with salt and pepper and a few knobs of butter.
Roasted Pumpkin and Tomatoes
Simply cut the Pumpkin into thick slices and the Tomatoes in half, horizontally. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with Caraway and Cumin seed and drizzle with oil.
Roast at 425 F or 220 C or until tender.
5 tblsp Rapeseed Oil
I tblsp White wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper
Simply whisk together