I should have googled what piquillos were before I made this. Because I ended up making this butternut squash piquillo crema recipe from Peter Meehan’s Power Vegetables with a tin of chipotles in adobo instead.
Piquillos and chipotle in adobo are very much not the same thing. The latter is mad spicy, the former? Not so much. Still it’s one of my most delicious mistakes. Since you can’t get piquillos as easily here, though I reckon sweet red peppers might do, I’ve found no other purpose for chipotle in adobo that I like as much as this.
I tend to eat this vegetarian butternut squash and crema with a good helping of pasta, though I’d imagine a warm bowl of rice would also do nicely. I use up the remainder of the garlic olive oil to roast potatoes, veggies, meats and fried eggs. Garlic all the things basically.
Pete Meehan suggests you can have this as a side (I’m not sure with what though, maybe a good medium-rare steak or some expertly roast chicken) or as I have described above, with some pasta or rice as a comforting main. Even if you use the wrong sort of chili.
Butternut Squash and Chipotle Crema
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 cups olive oil
- 1 cup creme fraîche
- 1/2 cup chipotle in adobo
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 1 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro
- Preheat your oven to 200 C/ 400 F.
- Confit the garlic by placing it in a small saucepan and covering it in olive oil until it starts to float. Place it on a low heat, bring to a simmer and then turn down the heat, leaving it for 20 minutes.
- Toss the cubes of butternut squash in a few tablespoons of the garlic oil. You want to lightly coat the cubes, salt and then roast them in an even layer for about 30 minutes. Toss halfway through.
- Warm the crema (or its stunt-double) in a glass measuring cup in the microwave at low for 1 minute. Pour into a blender with the chilies of voice, garlic and salt and blend until smooth.
- Pour the crema into a large skillet set over a low heat, add the roasted squash and toss to combine. Stir in half of the cheese and then serve topped with the remainder of the cheese and the cilantro.