A Life in the Country ~ Sunday, Food and Autumn Colours

Thanks to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall… A fabulous and easy recipe…

Chickpea and pumpkin salad

Chickpeas go very well with sweet, roasted squash, adding a little bite to contrast with the silky flesh. Serves three to four as a starter, two as a main course.

1 butternut or other squash
6 garlic cloves, unpeeled but bashed to break the skin
1-2 small red chillies, deseeded, membrane removed, finely chopped
4 sprigs fresh thyme
4 bay leaves
Flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 tbsp olive or rapeseed oil
150g dried chickpeas, soaked and cooked as above (or a 400g tin of chickpeas, drained and rinsed)
Juice of 1 lemon
1 large bunch parsley, stalks removed, leaves chopped
1 large bunch coriander, stalks removed, leaves chopped
1 small bunch mint, stalks removed, leaves chopped
20g pumpkin seeds, toasted

Heat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6. Peel the squash, if you like (I usually leave the skin on), halve it, scoop out the seeds, then cut it into 4cm chunks. Put these in a roasting tin with the garlic, chilli, thyme, bay leaves, some salt and pepper. Trickle over three tablespoons of oil and mix with your hands until well coated. Roast for 35-45 minutes, until the squash is softened and beginning to char around the edges. Add the chickpeas, toss and cook for five minutes to warm through. Add the lemon juice and toss with the herbs, pumpkin seeds and a bit of sea salt. Serve warm, with a little oil trickled over the top if you like.

The colours on the trees are simply amazing..