Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash

This versatile recipe is a nice change of pace from the usual side dish. Its nice, flavorful, cheap and easy to make. Look for a medium, but plump, butternut squash when selecting your gourd. Something not so shapely is preferable. Don’t worry about making too much of this recipe, as it can easily be re-heated or even turned into a delicious soup! Serves six easily.

Ingredients
1 medium/large butternut squash
2 tsp. coriander seeds
2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. fennel seeds
2 small dried red chilies (or to taste)
1 tsp. coarse salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 clove of garlic
2 tbsp. olive oil

Preheat oven to 400° F. Wash the squash, then cut it in half with a large sharp knife to remove the seeds. Continue to cut the squash into approximately 1 inch thick wedges. Set them aside in a large bowl.

Put all the dried herbs and spices into a mortar and pestle and pound them up along with the salt and black pepper until you have a fine powder. Next add the garlic clove and pound it into the spice powder. Scrape out the contents of the mortar and pestle into a bowl and slowly add the olive oil, forming a paste. You may find you need more or less olive oil depending on the number of slices you have. Use the paste to thoroughly cover the the squash wedges.

Place the wedges in a line on a heavy-duty roasting tray, skin side down. Roast the squash for about 30 minutes, or until tender. Depending on your oven, you may wish to rotate the roasting pan half way through the process. The spicey flavor will sink in and the squash will crisp slightly.