The recipe here has a couple of tweaks as I had half a butternut squash to use up and didn't have any spinach so I used peas, but you can use whatever's going. I really like the different textures and tastes that the sultanas and cashews bring to the dish, they really compliment the curry flavour - a fruit and nut sensation!
I made this for the second time here in San Francisco and I used the cup measurement method and the rice came out perfectly! It's basically 1 part rice to 2 parts liquid. So I used 2 cups of rice and 4 cups of stock (to serve 4 people). I didn't have any peas or spinach but it still tasted great!
1/2 butternut squash, peeled and cut into bitesize pieces (optional)
1 tbsp sunflower oil
1 or 2 crushed garlic cloves
1 tbsp medium curry paste (I used Madras)
125g/4.5oz [1 cup] basmati rice (or brown rice - see note below)
225ml/8fl oz [2 cups] hot vegetable stock
1 can of chick peas (241g), drained
1 or 2 handfuls of frozen peas (replaced 2 or 3 handfuls of spinach)
A handful of raisins or sultanas
A handful of cashew nuts
Dash of double cream (optional)
Directions - If using the butternut squash:
- Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas Mark 4
- Put the butternut squash pieces in a baking tray and drizzle with little bit of oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Roast in the oven on the top shelf for 45 minutes or until tender but not mushy.
- Heat the oil in a large non-stick pan that has a lid, then fry garlic and curry paste until it smells toasty.
- Tip the rice into the pan along with the stock, chick peas, raisins/sultanas and squash. Stir well and season with salt and pepper (stock is quite salty so go easy on the salt), then cover and bring to the boil.
- Reduce to a medium heat and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. If it’s taking a long time for the liquid to reduce, just take the lid off the pan for a few minutes. Add the frozen peas 10 minutes before end of cooking time.
- Stir in the cashew nuts (and spinach and let it wilt).
- Stir in the dash of cream just before serving, this will take off the spicy edge of the curry paste.
Note – if using brown rice, cook the rice in plenty of boiling water for 20 minutes first, and then add to the pan as normal in step 2.