Spiced Pumpkin with Paneer

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Don’t you love autumn? Sure, it’s colder, greyer and (at times) rainier but there’s something about watching the leaves turn yellow, orange and red – a sort of dignified beauty before we descend into the bitter cold, the snow and darkness. We wrap ourselves up in our coats, we pull on our tights, our sweaters, our hats and our gloves and fling ourselves outside one last time before we have to hibernate. And when we’re hungry, we’re turning to foods that are more robust, more down to earth and remind us of Halloween, the Harvest Festival and Bonfire Night. Apples, pears, cauliflower, potatoes, parsnips, pumpkin and roast chestnuts. Yum!

Speaking of pumpkin – if you’re sick of pumpkin soup – you have to try spicing it up and adding paneer. You have the sweetness of the pumpkin, the chewy saltiness of the paneer and chillies to add a bit of heat. It’s also super easy to make and pretty healthy – there isn’t a heavy sauce to weigh you down. Which of course helps you save room for apple crumble and custard for afters!

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Serves 2-3

1 tsp mustard seeds
1 onion, sliced
1 inch piece of ginger, finely chopped
a pinch of Indonesian red chilli (or more!)
small pumpkin, cubed
200g paneer, cubed, sauteed lightly
1 tsp garam masala
1-2 tsp salt (to taste)
ghee for frying

  1. Add about 1 tbsp ghee to a nonstick pan and heat on high heat.
  2. Add the mustard seeds and fry for about 10 seconds, before adding the onion and ginger.
  3. If the seeds are popping a little uncontrollably, lower the heat slightly and cook until the onion is translucent.
  4. Add the chilli, pumpkin, paneer and garam masala and stir thoroughly. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until the pumpkin is fully cooked.
  5. Add the salt to taste and if necessary, more chilli.
  6. Enjoy, perhaps with plain yoghurt and pickle!

So what do you think? Feel free to share your questions and comments below! We’d love to hear what you have to say.

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