I am in love with everything British- they have the best accents (well, Australia is up there too), an excess of castles, beautiful old buildings and BBC! BBC is fantastic and I think they have on of the best websites out there. Seriously, you can learn obscure languages (ask me how I know, I may have gone through a Gaelic phase; I still know how to ask “how are you” in Gaelic), read world news, find recipes etc. This particular recipe is from a BBC Vegetarian magazine publication that my brother gave me for christmas a few years back, but lucky for me, the recipe was also online. Go take a peek at the original recipe; it makes for a very impressive main dish, but also quite time-consuming, so for my own purposes I made some alterations.

Moroccan Butternut Rice Pilaf

7 cups cubed butternut squash (this was about half a squash for me)

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons groung coriander

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 cup mixed rice blend

1 medium onion, diced

2 tablespoons minced ginger root

1/4 cup raisins

1/4 cup slivered almonds

1 small bag spinach (I used 10 frozen spinach cubes, probably about the equivalent of 1 cup of steamed spinach)

2 tablespoons agave nectar

2 cups cooked chickpeas

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon coriander

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 tablespoons lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350F.

Mix spices (first measures of cumin and coriander, paprika and cinnamon) into olive oil. Pour over butternut squash cubes in a pan and toss to coat. Place in oven and roast for about 40 minutes or until cubes are tender, tossing cubes a couple times during baking.

Meanwhile combine the rice and 2 cups of water in a saucepan and cook until all the water is absorbed and rice is tender.

Saute onion and ginger in a frying pan until onion is golden brown, about five minutes. Add spinach, almonds and raisins and cook until spinach is wilted (or defrosted). Add butternut squash cubes and rice once they have cooked and drizzle with agave.

Place chickpeas, garlic and second measures of cumin and coriander, olive oil, and lemon juice in food processor and puree. You may need to add some water at this point to get a good consistency.

Mix hummus into mixture in frying pan and stir to incorporate (you could also leave it out or layer it when serving-the dish looks much more attractive pre-hummus, but it adds a nice touch flavourwise)

-K

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