The two-week countdown to Christmas has begun and yet I can’t bring myself to believe it. To say this year has gone fast would be an understatement. With work deadlines looming and a serious case of the flu getting the better of me, I decided it was time to get into the festive spirit.
My first attempt was by creating this warm and filling dish that perfectly satisfies a sweet tooth, whilst giving you loads of vitamins and minerals at the same time. Plus, it tastes quite literally like Christmas in a bowl.
Ingredients: (serves 1)
- ½ butternut squash
- ½ courgette
- A drizzle of rapeseed oil
- 1 tbsp pine nuts
- 1 tbsp dried cranberries
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp cranberry juice
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1tsp paprika
Peel the butternut squash, remove the seeds and cut it into chunks. Warning: this is harder than it sounds and requires some serious elbow grease! Place the chunks on a baking tray, drizzle with rapeseed oil and put in the oven for 30 minutes on 180°, or until cooked through.
While waiting, cut the courgette into similarly sized chunks. Then toast the pine nuts by putting them in a pan on a low heat for about 3 minutes, stirring to ensure they do not burn.
When the butternut squash is cooked, put the chunks in a pan on a low heat with a drizzle of rapeseed oil. Add the courgettes, flipping them over after 2 minutes to ensure they are cooked through on both sides. Then add the pine nuts and cranberries.
In a separate pan, add the maple syrup, cranberry juice, paprika and cinnamon and mix together. After heating for a couple of minutes, pour the mixture onto your vegetables, making sure they are fully covered in the liquid.
Take the mixture off the heat after 3 minutes, making sure the vegetables don’t burn, and place into a bowl. The added spinach is entirely for decorative purposes.
This dish is super sweet and seriously deliciously! It’s bound to bring out your festive spirit.
If for some strange reason my first attempt fails, whip out your best (or worst) Christmas jumper and put on Love Actually.