Every winter I lament the disappearance of stone fruits but celebrate the reappearance of butternut squash. This pumpkin-esque vegetable is extremely versatile and finds its way into many recipes throughout the winter months at Nefeli Nine. I wanted to share a couple of my current favourites with you. These are both vegan recipes and are great for sharing.
At Nefeli Nine we follow the 'Blue Zones Diet' or rather the Ikarian Diet, and base most of our recipes on this way of eating. Food choices vary from region to region, however what connects the dots between all the Blue Zone diets is that they are primarily plant-based, with up to 95 percent of their food coming from vegetables, fruits, grains, and legumes. Meat, fish and dairy are enjoyed as more of a delicacy. Another facet of the Blue Zones diet is eating seasonal food. So here are a couple of recipes that celebrate butternut squash season!
Butternut Squash and Cannellini Bean Stew
This delicious one pot stew is an easy vegan recipe that is warming, hearty and healthy. It is simple, quick and can keep for a couple of days. If you can’t find cannellini beans this works very well with chickpeas too.
1 1/2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 1/2 Cups Yellow Onion (diced)
2 Garlic Cloves (minced)
1/2 Tsp Salt
1/2 Tsp Ground Paprika
1/2 Tsp Ground Cumin
1/4 Tsp Ground Ginger
1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
1/4 -1/2 Tsp Chilli Powder
1 Tbsp Tomato Paste
3 Cups Diced Butternut Squash (more or less one medium butternut squash)
1 Can Cannellini Beans
1 Can Diced tomatoes
1 1/2 Cups Unsalted Vegetable Stock
3 Cups Spinach Leaves
Parsley Sprigs (to serve)
Heat oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute for five minutes or until they have softened and become a little golden. Stir in salt, paprika, cumin, ginger, chilli and pepper and cook for one minute. Stir in tomato paste and cook for a further minute. Add in squash and chickpeas, stir them for 2-3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the stock, scraping the sides of the pan to ensure nothing is stuck to the sides. Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 – 25 minutes (until the squash is soft) and add in the spinach. Cook for a couple more minutes until the spinach leaves have wilted.
Serve over quinoa or rice with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and even some toasted sliced almonds.
Butternut Squash Soup
This is so simple, and so delicious, I like to add extra ginger and chili to really warm myself up. This is a great as a meal alone with some toasted sourdough bread or as a starter.
2 Tbsp Olive Oil 1 Onion (diced) 4 Garlic Cloves (crushed)
1 Leek (sliced into fine rounds)
2 Thumb Sized Pieces of Ginger (finely chopped)
1 Litre of Vegetable Stock
Salt & Pepper
Chilli Powder to taste Fresh Parsley (or any herb of choice for serving)
Heat the olive oil in a large pan.
Add all the chopped vegetables and stir fry until they are brown.
Add chilli and ginger.
Simmer until butternut squash is soft.
Blend until butternut squash pieces have all been broken down.
Season and serve with fresh herbs.
What is your favourite butternut squash recipe? Let us know! Tag us on Instagram with #Nefelininerecipes :)