Roasted Squash With Spiced Onion Gravy
Make a meal out of this smothered squash by having it with rice and salted yogurt, or serve it as a side for roast chicken or a seared pork chop. The mild winter squash gets a punch from a spicy and tart onion gravy that comes together while the squash roasts in the oven. Be sure to season the gravy aggressively with salt so the vinegar, chile and spices pop.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 3pounds winter squash (such as butternut, honeynut or kabocha)
- 6tablespoons melted ghee or neutral oil
- Kosher salt
- 1 ½teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1tablespoon ground cumin
- 2teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 ½teaspoons Kashmiri red chile powder (or ¾ teaspoon cayenne)
- 1large yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1(1-inch) piece fresh ginger, finely grated (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- ½cup cilantro, roughly chopped
- Steamed rice or roti and salted plain yogurt, for serving
Step 1Roast the squash: Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 450 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Step 2Scrub the squash, then remove the stem and cut in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and discard. Cut the squash crosswise into ½-inch thick slices and transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
Step 3Drizzle over the 3 tablespoons of melted ghee, then sprinkle over 1 ½ teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon turmeric. Use your hands to evenly coat the squash with the seasonings, and arrange in roughly a single layer. Roast until browned and tender, rotating the pan once during cooking, 30 to 35 minutes.
Step 4In the meantime, prepare the gravy: In a small bowl combine the cumin, coriander, chile and remaining ½ teaspoon turmeric and have it handy.
Step 5In a large skillet, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons ghee over medium-high for 1 minute. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until frizzled and browned, with some blackened bits, about 15 minutes. (You will develop lots of dark brown bits on the bottom of the skillet, this is just what you want.)
Step 6Add the spices in the bowl and the ginger, and cook until fragrant and sticking to the bottom of the skillet, stirring constantly, about 1 minute. Add vinegar and 1 cup water. Scrape up all browned bits with a stiff wooden spoon and bring the mixture to a simmer. Season generously with salt, to taste. (If the mixture tastes too acidic or spicy, you likely need more salt.)
Step 7Arrange the squash on a platter, top with gravy, garnish with cilantro, and serve right away with steamed rice (or roti) and salted yogurt.