Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Savory Beef and Squash Pie

Holy cow, Batman, this dish was so good that I couldn't wait to share it with you.  The squash is slightly sweet, counteracting the spicy and savory goodies underneath.  I love this recipe because you could use whatever veggies you have on hand.  Don't have those I used?  No worries, toss in whatever you have in your 'fridge.  Great way to use up leftover veggies.

The funny thing is, a year ago (okay, seven months ago even), I wouldn't have touched squash with a ten-foot pole.  I most certainly would not have thought squash tasted "sweet".  How the mighty have fallen:)  Our taste buds can, and do, change when you stop the processed food and continue to try new things!

  • Butternut Squash - 1 decent size or 2 small
  • Coconut oil (or ghee) - 1 Tbs or so
  • Leeks (or onions), diced - 1 cup or so
  • Sliced mushrooms - 8 oz or so
  • Ground beef (grass fed; or other combination of ground meat) - 2 lbs
  • Emeril's Creole Seasoning (note:  I use a lot less salt than the recipe calls for, you may need to adjust depending upon your preference for salt) - 3-4 Tbs (to taste - you probably want to start with less and add until it tastes good to you)
  • Garlic powder - 1 Tbs (to taste)
  • Onion powder - 1 tsp (to taste)
  • Kosher salt - 1/4 tsp (to taste) (if you use the Emeril Creole Seasoning per the recipe, you'll probably want to omit the salt here)
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • Tomato paste, 1 Tbs
  • Fresh spinach - 2 to 3 cups
  • Coconut Butter - 2 Tbs (this will depend upon how much squash you have)
  • Coconut Milk (canned, get the kind without the "gunk") - 1/2 cup (again, this will depend on your squash, use less and add more as needed)
  • Cayenne pepper - 1/4 tsp (maybe a little more if you like things spicy)
  • Cinnamon - 1-2 tsp
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  
  2. Cut squash in half.  Remove seeds and membranes.  Put in a pan to roast.  Roast for 350 degrees for about 50 minutes (you can also use water in the roasting process, but this worked for me and seemed easier).
  3. Heat oil over medium heat.  Once heated, add leeks (or onions).  After a few minutes, add mushrooms.  Cook until tender, maybe 5-10 minutes.
  4. Add ground beef and cook until no longer pink.
  5. Add spices (Emeril though salt), tomatoes, and tomato paste.  Cook for a few minutes until tomatoes begin to release their juices.  Then add the spinach.  Cook until spinach is wilted.
  6. Put ground beef mixture in the bottom of your roasting pan.
  7. Remove cooked squash flesh from the skin.  With the flesh, puree the coconut butter, coconut milk, cayenne pepper, and cinnamon until desired consistency is reached (I put this all in the food processor for a few quick whirls; you could also use a hand blender or hand-held potato masher...whatever you have that works).  Spread squash puree over the tom of the ground beef mixture.
  8. Bake about 20 minutes.
Use curry powder instead of Creole seasoning; add fresh ginger and some type of spicy pepper to meat mixture; and add a little powdered ginger to squash.

Part of the Real Food Wednesday carnival at Kelly the Kitchen Kop; there are some great website you should check out! 

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