As the weather has been getting colder, rather than turning to heavy winter comfort foods, I’ve instead been craving spicier food, which warms the body and excites the palate.
By including squash in this fish curry, it’s filling enough to act as a main meal without needing rice on the side. Although butternut squash is widely available year round, now is the time to experiment with the other squash you’ll find at the markets – many of them have slightly smoother flesh than butternut, and don’t break down into a mush as easily. They’re also a little less sweet, and so work really well in a dish like this. Kabocha squash with it’s orange-flecked green skin, blue-grey skinned hubbard squash, smaller acorn squash and the distinctively shaped turban squashes are all plentiful right now.
For this you’ll need squash, firm white fish (I used huss and monkfish), two onions, tomato passata and your spice mix or masala. Mine included fresh chilli, root ginger, garlic, coriander seed and fenugreek. To serve you’ll need some chopped coriander and limes, and you can serve with rice or naan bread if you wish.
Chop the squash into cubes of about 3cm, removing the skin and the seeds and fibres in the core. Fry the finely chopped onions in oil and when translucent add your spice paste and cook to release the flavours. Add the tomato passata and the squash, and cook for 20-30 minutes until the squash is tender. If the sauce is drying out at any point, add some water to keep it moist. Chop the fish into bite-sized pieces, add to the sauce, cover and cook for five more minutes until the fish is done.
Serve with the chopped coriander and a wedge of lime alongside. To accompany it, we made a simple salad of grated cucumber with a handful of mint and finely chopped green chilli.