Spiced winter squash

Time 1 hour
Yields Serves 4
Spiced winter squash
(Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times )

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the shallots, ginger and garlic and pulse until very finely chopped.


Using the side of a large chef’s knife or a small mallet, break each nutmeg into about 2 or 3 pieces.


In a large, heavy saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallot mixture and cook until the shallots begin to turn golden brown, about 4 minutes. Add the sambal oelek, cumin and turmeric and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Mix in the coconut milk, broth, peanut butter, whole lime leaves, cinnamon sticks, cloves, salt and nutmeg and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently to meld the flavors, about 10 minutes.


Meanwhile, trim, seed and quarter the squash lengthwise. Cut squash quarters crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices. Add the squash to the saucepan and simmer, partially covered. Cook the squash, gently stirring occasionally, until it is tender yet retains shape and the sauce thickens slightly, 20 to 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt. Remove the cloves, nutmeg pieces and lime leaves before serving. (Can be prepared 5 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before serving.)


Serve the squash over rice if desired. Garnish with chopped cilantro and lime leaf slivers and serve.

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