It's January, but spring is not far away....

Hopefully,spring is on its way but not close enough yet to be spending much time on the allotment.
Instead, I find the cold, damp weather is more conducive to some indoor 'gardening', snuggled up cosily, flicking through seed catalogues or browsing the web.

I am slowly making lists and plans of what to grow this coming season.
One thing definitely on the list will be more squash.

Last year the butternut squash were one of the highlights on the lottie and we are just finishing the last few stored in the garage.

I find roasting the squash one of the best ways to cook it, ensuring a delicious concentrated flavour and nicely chewy texture.

Mixed with some cooked brown rice, (seasoned with a little olive oil and lemon juice) and topped with steamed broccoli, it made a delicious supper served with hot pepper sauce and cooling yoghurt.

If you would like to try making the hot pepper sauce, the recipe is as follows:

Chop 2 red peppers and 1 red onion, mix with hot smoked paprika to taste ( I used about 1/4 teaspoon)  about 1 teaspoon ground cumin seeds, salt and pepper and a tablespoon of olive oil.
Roast in a very hot oven (200 c) until golden brown - about 30 minutes.
Drain a 400g tin of tomatoes, reserving the juice and add to the roasted vegetables with a crushed clove of garlic.
Return to the oven for another 5 minutes. Then puree in a blender, adding a splash of balsamic vinegar and 1 teaspoon of brown sugar.
Adjust the seasoning and consistency adding more of the reserved juice if necessary.

The recipe makes a generous amount, but it keeps well in the fridge or can be frozen.
I also found it made a good accompaniment to some brown rice or lentils topped with stir fried vegetables ( in this case, leeks, red pepper, sprouting broccoli and garlic) and slices of grilled Halloumi cheese.


  1. It sounds & looks delicious, definitely going to give it a try. x

  2. I love the start of the gardening season, planning and then starting the seeds off indoors it is so satisfying. The pepper sauce sounds delicious.

  3. Some great recipe ideas in this post which I'll definitely be trying. We're in a bit of a rut with meals here and I've been looking for some tasty additions. Thanks!

  4. Delicious. I like growing squashes too, although I still seem to have quite a few left from last year. Of course it won't stop me growing more this year. I like the sound of the pepper sauce with the butternut, I shall give it a go. CJ xx

  5. Looks delicious and I love your photos too :)

    1. Thank you - got new camera for Christmas :)

  6. Fantastic. More opportunities to use those spices I bought. Thank you!

  7. Gosh, that does look super nice. And warming on these chilly winter days.


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