I do love this time of year–gourd season! Candy corn! Pumpkin time! Apple cider! Squash here there and everywhere! I have cooked with butternut squash but not with any other kind so I decided to get some acorn and kabocha squash from the Farmers Market. They look pretty..but…
Don’t let the looks deceive you because they are a pain in the fanny to cut through! I thought of that as I bought them and I sorta knew what I was getting myself into..but wow! The kabocha took 20 minutes to cut through, peel, stab, etc.. Online guy told me to forget about it, that it was not worth it. Not worth it!? I paid for this gourd, carried it home, started the process and I was determined to see it through. As I stopped to catch my breath I looked around for Online guy but he had long disappeared into his corner and would stay there until lunch was ready. I didn’t blame him. I had just come from the gym that day having lifted weights and at the end of the squash fight my arms were yelling at me. It was either me or the squash and it was gonna be a bad day for Mr. Kabocha. I did not take pictures of the mess that I made because I was so engrossed in what I was doing but here was the first step.
After this it did not look pretty at all as I had to cut it into wedges and take off the really hard outer layer. Recently, my husband and I purchased some Japanese knives from Amazon and let me tell you, it helped a lot. I would recommend these knives or any other Japanese kind as they are great! They slice through onions like butter. My pretty knife is laid out below 🙂
So this is an easy dish to prepare, um, aside from the kabocha cutting. I used Thai red curry paste and Chaokoh coconut milk. I prefer this brand because it looks so rich and beautiful and it makes for a thicker sauce I think. I don’t use the light version of coconut milk. I want the full fat version. Look at that milky goodness!
When you have fought with, chopped and put everything into the pot, it looks like this. I liked the taste of kabocha squash and this is a nice vegetarian dish but you can add chicken if you want. It was comfort food. I made some Jasmine rice (Basmati, whte, brown, even quinoa would work) and called it a day.
Was it worth all the hassle, sweat, tears (almost..haha..kidding) and pain. Heck yeah! Stay tuned for the next gourd match…
Recipe taken from Chowhound
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, medium dice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- 2 medium green bell peppers, seeds and ribs removed and cut into 1/4-inch strips
- 4 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger (from about a 1-1/2-inch piece)
- 3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
- 1 (13- to 14-ounce) can unsweetened regular coconut milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 medium kabocha squash (about 2 1/2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
- Steamed white rice or steamed brown rice, for serving
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion and 1 teaspoon of the salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion has softened, about 6 minutes. Add the peppers, garlic, and ginger, stir to combine, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the curry paste, stir to coat the onion-pepper mixture, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the coconut milk, water, soy sauce, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer.
- Stir in the squash, return to a simmer, reduce the heat to medium low, and continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the squash is fork-tender but still firm, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the lime juice. Taste and season with salt as needed.
- Sprinkle with the cilantro and serve immediately over steamed rice.