We went for a Sunday stroll yesterday. Oh, how I love this time of year. The leaves are shedding from the trees. The weather is beginning to chill- It’s time for chunky sweaters and warm coats. Pumpkin carving has begun. Halloween is approaching (only one week to go).
My daughter is so excited about Halloween this year. She’s just learnt to say the word ‘spooky.’ Every time we go shopping she points at pumpkins and shouts ‘spooky’, so I’ve ended up with an abundance of pumpkins this year and little funky coloured squash.
I thought I’d try and make Halloween a bit special this year to leave the doom and gloom behind. So I’ve gone all out.
I’ve been reading a lot about chakra healing recently. I am definitely in need of some TLC. In particular, my sacral chakra- which rules creativity and pleasure. Seeing as it’s autumn and the vibrant colour of orange is everywhere, it seemed like the perfect time to publish some healing food recipes.
After all, what are cosy nights made for? Warm comforting food and treats for the soul. I have been putting a lot of focus into my blog, I forget sometimes to switch off and focus on myself also.
Yesterday I was completely stuck with what to do with all the extra squash so I decided to get cooking.
I made a pumpkin Biryani. It’s a little bit complicated and fussy, but it’s soo worth the work. I served it in the pumpkin just to make it extra ‘spooky’. I didn’t add any chillies as I made it for my kids, but you could chuck some in if you like your food spicy.
Here’s my recipe;
Pinch of Saffron/ Natural Yogurt full fat 1 large tub 400g/ 3tbs Biryani massala powder/ Cinnamon/ Nutmeg/ curry powder 1 tbs/ cumin seeds/ Himalayan salt/ Paneer/ 1 Cup of vegetables (or meat)/ 1 medium pumpkin/ Basmati rice/ 1 lemon/ fresh coriander leaf/ mint leaves/ 2 cloves/ onion/ cashew nuts/ ghee (or oil) / (chilli’s and sultana’s optional)/ chopped garlic/ flaked almonds
In a cup of hot water soak a pinch of saffron until the water is an autumn auburn colour. Leave to soak 30 mins.
In a bowl add half a cup of full-fat natural yoghurt. Add spices, salt and cumin seeds, stir. Add cubed Paneer cheese and vegetables. (Or meat such as chicken, marinate in the fridge for a minimum of two hours.) Leave to marinate for 25 mins.
Cup top of the pumpkin. Scoop out seeds. Drizzle inside with olive oil salt and pepper. Put the lid back on, wrap in tin foil and place in oven 160 degrees for approx 50 mins.
Wash Basmati rice. In a pan of hot water add lemon juice, cumin seeds, 2 cloves, 1 tbs olive oil, salt and rice. Cook for half the cooking time, until rice, begins to dance in the heat. Rice should be half cooked. Drain if necessary.
Spread rice out flat on a dish to cool quickly. Drizzle saffron water over a plate of rice.
In a pan heat, 1 tbs of ghee (oil if preferred) cook chopped onions for 15 mins then add 3 tbs cashews, chilli’s if desired and a spoonful of sultanas.
Add marinated veg (or meat), add chopped garlic, coriander leaf and some mint leaves. Add a cup of yoghurt and a good splash of water.
Add rice. Turn off the heat.
Take the pumpkin out of the oven and begin to scoop out the flesh. Add flesh to Biryani mix and stir together.
Place mix back into the pumpkin and add flaked almonds and lemon wedge, top with lid. Wrap in tin foil again. Place in oven for 40 mins.
Serve in the pumpkin. Make a mint yoghurt to accompany if you’ve added chillies.
My Indian Style Mint Yogurt
1/2 cup of Yogurt/ Chopped mint leaves/ Chopped Coriander/ 3 tsp Mint Sauce/ Salt/ Paprika
Mix together, Add whole milk to change the consistency is desired.