ROAST SQUASH & LEEKS WITH THYME AND BUTTERMILK SAUCE

‘I will never throwing anything away…’

More leftover recipes I promised and more leftover recipes I have. Unfortunately though I do believe this is the last of my leftover meat suggestions as I have now finished my stolen meat supply. Alas, it has lasted me through shredded tacos, curries, sandwiches, crackers and even just taking it straight from the foil with my fingers, dunked into some hot sauce and thrown into my mouth.

So this recipe is more about laziness. The turkey cuts I had left were still tender and juicy and I wanted to enjoy them in this format so some roasted vegetables with a cool dressing dribbled over it was all I needed. I wanted vegetables that had a smoky depth to them that lifts the tenderness of the turkey but I also wanted the dressing to be a little zingy and cool to counter balance this and not make the meal too hearty.

There is no particular design to the roast vegetables here. I knew I wanted a butternut squash because it has a denseness to it that I was kind of craving. I already had leeks and the potatoes were thrown in because I knew I wanted some kind of carbohydrate. If you didn’t particularly want potatoes as well as the squash (they both serve similar purpose) then I’d recommend doing away with the potatoes and perhaps boiling up a little rice or having some couscous with it.

Then again I’m sure this would be absolutely fine without potatoes or any recommended replacement. Just so long as the dressing is zingy and fresh and the veg is smoky and they are both slapped on top of a cold cut – you’re on to a winner.

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Preheat the oven to 200C. In a measuring jug pour in about 60ml of milk (any milk will do) before squeezing in about a tablespoon of lemon juice. Allow this to sit and turn into buttermilk while you assemble your veg. Grab yourself a wide roasting pan – you want room to roast the veg as opposed to overcrowding and too much water leaking out of the veg. Roughly chop up a potato and half of a butternut squash and throw into the pan. Try and make sure these are chopped into fairly similar sized chunks so that they take the same amount of time to cook.

Slice up a leek into thick coins and throw them into the pan. Drizzle over about a tablespoon or so of good olive oil before sprinkling over some sea salt, smoked paprika and some caraway seeds. Mix this all together using your hands – or a spoon if you’re finicky – and slide in the oven for about 50 minutes, turning over half way through. Meanwhile, crack on with the rest of your dressing (which literally takes 5 minutes).

To the jug of buttermilk, add a generous heaped tablespoon of mayonnaise. On top of this, grate in a small clove of garlic and a twist of black pepper. Grab yourself a few steps of thyme and roughly cut up with mezzaluna or a sharp knife. Sprinkle about three quarters of this into the buttermilk and give it a stir. Keep this to one side until your vegetables have roasted.

Once the veg has roasted, remove from the oven. Plate up your cold cuts and drench them in the roasted veg. Pour over as much of the dressing as you see fit before sprinkling over any remaining thyme leaves just for an extra herbal punch. Eat.

I will never throw anything away. I will always figure out a way to revive and drag it back from the grave. Admittedly it doesn’t always pay off, but this is a little recipe that is fool proof and works every time when you down to your last meat scraps and can’t bare to introduce them to the bottom of the bin.

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