I am nothing if not a spice-lover. Spicier the dish, happier me! So, not surprisingly, I have not been a fan of butternut squash especially in its non-Indian avatars! So, for a while now, I have walked past the butternut squash noodles but ignored them largely while enjoying the change that zucchini noodles provided, a dish that I had written about earlier. But this time, I decided to give them a try! And was surprised at my own positive response (it may have had something to do with my spice mix ;-). With lots of veggies! And this is vegan as well!
Butternut squash noodles, Garlic, Ginger, Onions, Extra firm Tofu, Broccoli florets, Cauliflower florets, Dark soy sauce, Green peppercorns in brine, Red chili flakes, Vegetarian Sambal Oelek (hot sauce), Sesame oil, Canola oil, Honey, Fresh lemon juice.
Start by preparing the spicy sauce:
Blend the following to a coarse paste: 1 garlic clove + 2″ piece of ginger + 3 tsp of green peppercorns. To a small bowl, add 2 tbsps of sesame oil + 1 tbsp of honey + 1 tsp of Sambal Oelek + 1 tbsp of red chili flakes +2 tsps of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Whisk well and then add the ground paste to the oil spice blend. Pour into a bottle and keep refrigerated. (You can make this at least 2 days in advance). Slice 2 medium red onions into long thin strips.
- Mince 2 garlic cloves.
- Mince 2″ piece of peeled ginger.
- Cut up 1 cup of tofu into cubes. Dab them with a paper towel to remove the moisture as much as possible.
- Wash and cut up 3/4 cup each of broccoli and cauliflower.
- Arrange them on a baking sheet, drizzle olive oil, salt and red chili flakes and mix them well. Bake in a 400 degrees oven for 10 minutes till the edges are slightly charred. Take them out of the oven and keep aside.
- Take a large flat bottomed pan and heat 2 tbsps of canola oil and spread it all over to coat the base of the pan.
- Arrange the cubed tofu all over the base. Reduce the heat and let them brown for about 3-4 minutes. Gently take them out of the pan and spread them over a plate.
- Heat 2 tbsps of sesame oil in the same pan.
- Add ginger and saute and then add the minced garlic and saute well.
- Add the sliced onions and saute till the onions turn translucent.
- Add 2 cups of butternut squash noodles, salt to taste and mix everything well. Spread out the noodles around the base of the pan and allow it to cook on medium heat for about 4 minutes. Thereafter, toss them around and spread them again and allow to cook for another couple of minutes.
- Add the grilled broccoli and cauliflower and also the half of the spicy sauce and gently mix everything together.
- Finally add the tofu and the rest of the sauce and mix well.
- Serve immediately and prepare to be amazed!!
Here is a picture of the noodles cooking on the stove….hope you can see the smoke emanating from the noodles 🙂