Special Diet

  • 1 kg (2 lb) pumpkin or butternut squash
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 3 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar or mango chutney
  • 25 g (1 oz) fresh coriander leaves
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 green chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • pinch of caster sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pistachio nuts, roughly chopped
  • 6 tablespoons coconut cream
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • salt and black pepper

Cut the pumpkin or squash into thin wedges about 1 cm (½ inch) thick, discarding the seeds and fibres, and put in a large dish.

Heat a heavy-based frying pan until hot, add the whole spices and cook over a medium heat, stirring, until browned. Leave to cool, then grind to a powder in a spice grinder or in a mortar with a pestle. Mix the ground spices with the oil and sugar or mango chutney in a small bowl, then add to the pumpkin wedges and toss well to coat.

Cook the pumpkin or squash wedges under a preheated hot grill, or over a preheated hot gas barbecue or the hot coals of a charcoal barbecue, for 6–8 minutes on each side until charred and tender.

Meanwhile, make the pesto. Put the coriander leaves, garlic, chilli, sugar and pistachio nuts in a food processor and process until fairly finely ground and blended. Season with salt and pepper. Add the coconut cream and lime juice and process again. Transfer to a serving bowl.

Serve the wedges hot with the coconut pesto.

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