Now that the steamer was down on the counter, I knew wasn’t in the mood for an Asian dumpling so I hunted for something a little different. I’m glad I did, otherwise, I wouldn’t have found this unique recipe. It was also surprisingly quick and easy to make (if you don’t mind taking some time to grate the squash).
I used one acorn squash, and doubled all the other ingredients in the original recipe and was rewarded with 20 dumplings. It was enough for two hungry adults to wolf down as a main dish. It’s probably enough for a family of four to have as a side dish.
I also substituted flat leaf Italian parsley for the cilantro and reduced the amount of coriander. (Frequent readers will know that my in-house taste tester is the victim of the “soapy taste blues” whenever tasting either cilantro and coriander. So, as always, feel free to use what you wish.)
Acorn Squash Wadas in Garlicky Oil
from Laxmi’s Vegetarian Kitchen
- 1 small acorn squash
- 2 fresh hot green chili, stemmed and minced
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 4 tablespoons chick pea flour
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 tablespoons mild peanut or vegetable oil, plus more for brushing the steamer
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2 or 3 garlic cloves cut into slivers
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley (original recipe used cilantro)
Peel and seed the squash. Grate and measure 1 1/2 cups of squash. Combine with the remaining dumpling ingredients and mix well. (Note: I sort of mushed the mixture together using the back of a spoon. I noticed the finer the grate, the better the mixture stayed together.)
Brush a steamer basket with oil or line a bamboo steamer with cheesecloth. Bring at least 1 inch of water to a boil in the steaming pot. Place heaping tablespoonfuls of the squash mixture 1/2 inch apart in the steamer basket.
Place over the boiling water, cover, and steam until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 4 minutes. You may have to steam them in batches. depending on the size of your steamer; add more boiling water for the second batch if necessary. (Note: I have a double steamer and was able to steam all 20 dumplings at the same time.) Ease out gently with a metal spatula and turn into a shallow serving dish.
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds; when the seeds begin to sizzle and splutter, stir in the garlic. Cook until the garlic is lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn off the heat and add the parsley.
Pour the seasoned oil over the dumplings, scraping the skillet with a rubber spatula. Toss well to coat. Serve immediately. Makes 4 to 6 servings. Preparation time: 15 minutes.