A fast vegetarian feast in a bowl with a nutty flavour

What’s for dinner?: This peanut butter sauce goes brilliantly with roast squash

Evie Ward’s Roast Squash with Peanut Butter Sauce

Evie Ward’s Roast Squash with Peanut Butter Sauce

 

Evie Ward is a food entrepreneur and co-owner of NutShed, an Irish peanut butter and vegan treats business

Autumn is my favourite season for so many reasons, the leaves turning, the fires lighting and the turn in the wheel of seasonal vegetables, all of which offer a warm sense of familiarity that we have learned to relish so much this year.

November is Food Month in The Irish Times. irishtimes.com/foodmonth
November is Food Month in The Irish Times. irishtimes.com/foodmonth

Like most people, I adore squash and all the velvety richness it brings to our plates this time of year, whether blended with thyme for soup or roasted until caramelised with rosemary for a Sunday roast.

At NutShed, we live and breathe peanut butter, of course, but it just so happens that it is delicious drizzled over roasted vegetables, especially naturally sweet squash and root veg. This sweet and spicy recipe brings a whole lot of flavour to the table as part of a lunchtime spread but is equally delicious as a simple weeknight dinner with sticky rice.

Here I’ve used Kuri squash but you can, of course, use whichever seasonal squash is your favourite. If you can, get your hands on the delicious Black Bean Rayu by White Mausu, for a spicy kick, but if not, some chilli crisps from an Asia shop, or even a finely chopped red chilli will do in a pinch. I eat this for a fast dinner with a bowl of rice, but it works great as a sharing side also.

What you’ll need

Serves 2 as a main or 4 as a side

1 squash
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
Olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper
80g peanut butter
1 tbsp soy sauce (or tamari)
½ tbsp sesame oil
½ tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp sunflower oil
Finely chopped scallions
Coriander
Toasted white and black sesame seeds
White Mausu Black Bean Rayu, or any rayu sauce
To serve: Your choice of rice

How to cook it

1 Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

2 Cut the squash in half lengthways, remove the pips and cut into half-moon slices.

3 Toss in a bowl with a generous glug of olive oil, black pepper, sea salt and garlic. Give it a good rub and turn out onto a baking tray and lay the squash flat.

4 Pop into a hot oven for around 30 minutes, turning once and remove when the squash is soft and has taken some colour.

5 While your squash is roasting, cook your rice and mix the peanut butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, maple syrup and sunflower oil together in a bowl and set aside.

6 To serve, simple pile your squash onto a plate with your rice and drizzle generously with the peanut butter sauce, topping with scallions, coriander and chilli.

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