Tag Archives: butternut squash

Recipe: Macaroni No-Cheese


Sometimes cooking is Art, sometimes cooking is Science, sometimes cooking is Alchemy and sometimes cooking is, well you don’t know what just happened. This is one of those kinds of recipes. There’s no cheese in this recipe. There’s no vegan cheese-substitute in this recipe. It doesn’t taste cheesy. But somehow it carries the same savoury, flavour-punch that you get with a good cheese sauce.

I don’t know what’s going on, but I’ll be making it again!

 photo IMG_0584_zpswcfsagcq.jpg

1 butternut squash, cut into wedges and de-seeded
200ml soy milk
1 tsp bouillon powder
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp mushroom ketchup
1/4 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1/2 bay leaf
250g macaroni pasta
cayenne or paprika for garnish

Heat the oven to 200C.
Place the butternut squash wedges on a roasting tin, pour over 100ml of water and cover with tin foil.
Put in the oven and bake for an hour.
When cooked and soft, remove from the oven and scrape the flesh from the skin.
Put the macaroni on to boil.
Add the butternut squash flesh into a saucepan, add the soy milk, bouillon powder, mustard powder, mushroom ketchup, thyme leaves and bay leaf to the pan.
Bring to the simmer and simmer gently for 5 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf and blend to a smooth paste. Add some boiling water from the cooking pasta if the sauce is too thick.
When the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the sauce.
Stir until thoroughly coated.
Season with salt and pepper.
Serve immediately with some paprika or cayenne sprinkled on the top.

Serves 4

Recipe: Butternut squash risotto with goat’s cheese and thyme


Please welcome a guest blogger to Two Fat Vegetarians today. Dave Remes is a lecturer at Birmingham City University, a freelance photographer and videographer and a father to three hungry kids! He is fanatical about food flavour combinations and has an idea for a community food programme that will hopefully go into production by the end of this year.

His recipe for us is a delicious risotto that’s just perfect for chilly autumn suppers. Thanks to Dave for this, and for the photo …


Half of a medium red onion finely sliced and diced
A good sized, whole head of garlic halved
Half a small goat’s cheese or more if you like it stronger in flavour!
Half of a medium sized butternut squash (I used the top end so didn’t need to deseed) cut into smallish chunks.
Half a pack of Arborio Risotto rice (a whole pack should feed 4-5)
A few sprigs of fresh thyme
Handful of parmesan cheese freshly grated
1 litre of good vegetable stock
1 Tablespoon of olive oil for the squash
1 knob of butter and a little olive oil for the risotto
Glass of white wine or Vermouth

Turn the oven to 200°/gas mark 4 and lightly coat the butternut squash chunks in olive oil and season with salt and pepper (Maldon sea salt flakes are good as you don’t need as much to add flavour)

Halve the head of garlic, retaining the outer skin layers, and lightly rub olive oil on both sides over the cut segments. Place the two halves in the oven skin side down.

Place the squash in a roasting tin and place in the oven with the garlic for about 30 minutes (the squash will cook quicker so keep an eye on it).

After they have been roasting for 15 minutes, start the risotto.

Fry the onion in a knob of butter, with a small dash of olive oil to stop it burning, in a large frying pan until translucent.

Add the risotto rice and stir into the onion for about a minute to coat the rice all over. Add the glass of wine and keep stirring to burn off the alcohol., and when this starts to dry up a little turn the heat down fairly low and start ladling a spoonful of stock every few minutes over the rice.

The idea is to wait for each ladle full to get soaked up into the rice before adding the next. Make sure that you keep stirring every so often to agitate the starch in the rice.

(Before the next stage add a large ladle of stock to give you time in between stirs so the risotto doesn’t dry up).

After 30 minutes take the squash out of the oven and pour into a food processor. Take the two halves of the garlic and with a spoon put the sticky, roasted garlic into the processor too.

Add about a teaspoon of fresh thyme to the processor, along with half a ladle of stock, or just enough to loosen up the mixture. Blitz until a fairly smooth consistency is achieved and set to one side.

The stock should be more or less used up by now – the consistency should look a bit porridge-like, but the rice should still have some bite to it.

Take the pan off the heat and stir in the butternut squash mixture until the risotto looks a deep orange colour and crumble in the goat’s cheese until mixed throroughly. Add a handful of grated parmesan cheese and maybe a splash of olive oil to serve.

Recipe: Roasted Root Vegetables with Lemon and Harissa Dressing


I didn’t intend to make this recipe. I was just going to roast some excess red onions to make a basis for a salad and then I noticed I had a lot of things in the fridge that would benefit from some roasting as well. When I put the harissa and lemon on the root vegetables I just had to share it because it tastes so good. You have the sweetness of the roots, the heat of the harissa and the fragrant sourness of the lemon and it’s an unbeatable combination.

I used carrots, parsnips and butternut squash (not technically a root veg, I know!) because that’s what I had in the fridge, but turnip and sweet potato would be great in this as well.


2 medium carrots, chopped into large pieces
3 parsnips, chopped into large pieces
1/2 butternut squash, chopped into large pieces
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp harissa paste

Pre heat the oven to 220C.
Put the vegetables on a roasting tray, rub with vegetable oil and season well with salt and pepper.
Roast for 30 minutes until the vegetables are cooked and a little brown round the edges.
Put the lemon juice, zest and harissa in a small bowl and mix thoroughly.
When the vegetables are cooked, remove the skin from the butternut squash.
Toss the vegetables in the dressing and serve.

Serves 2 as a warm main course salad with some green leaves for crunch.