Akshay Borges - Shetland Food Fair 2015

by Elizabeth Atia -

Akshay Borges, chef at award-winning The Scalloway Hotel and author behind Shetland Chef demonstrated at the Shetland Food Fair 2015 with a delicious and simple South Indian Pumpkin Curry dish, the recipe for which he has kindly shared with A Taste of Shetland.

Akshay's Cooking Tips:

  • Keep it simple. Using fresh, local ingredients is half the job done when cooking. You only need a few more ingredients to enhance the local produce.
  • Play with your food. Experiment.
  • Waste as little as possible. Add crab legs to a fish broth. Dry pumpkin seeds in a warm place near your oven and then eat them!
  • Cooking rice is a simple process. Add some flavours first. Always use double the amount of water to rice.
  • Wash the rice first to take the starches out.
  • When the mustard seeds pop, that's when all the flavours are released.

South Indian Pumpkin Curry

Course: Main

Servings: 4 people

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 - 30 minutes

Pumpkin Curry
  • pumpkin - 800 grams (or butternut squash, peeled and chopped)
  • turmeric powder - 1/2 tbsp
  • red chili powder - 1/4 tsp (optional)
  • salt - (as required)
  • cumin seeds - 1/2 tbsp
  • mustard seeds - 1/2 tbsp
  • - 12-15 curry leaves
  • coconut milk - 2 tins
  • few sprigs coriander -
  • vegetable oil - 2 tbsp (or coconut oil)
Cumin/Veg Pilau Rice
  • Basmati rice - 250 grams (washed and drained until the water runs clear)
  • water - 500 grams (or vegetable stock)
  • salt to taste -
  • cumin seeds - 2 tbsp
  • carrots - 2 (chopped finely)
  • oil - 2 tbsp
  • green peas - 1/2 cup
  • red onion - 1 (chopped finely)
  1. To prepare the pumpkin curry, add the oil and spices to a pan and turn the heat to medium.
  2. Once the mustard and cumin seeds start popping, add the pumpkin and stir.
  3. Add the coconut milk and let it cook for 20-30 minutes, adding more water if needed. Season to taste.
  4. To prepare the rice, toast the cumin seeds in a dry pot until they brown and release that nutty aroma.
  5. Add the oil and the carrots and red onion. Stir over a low flame until half cooked.
  6. Add the basmati rice and water or vegetable stock. Allow to boil until there is water left just above the rice. Stir occasionally so that the rice does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Turn the heat to low, pop a lid on the pot and leave it for 5-8 minutes. Check to see if it's cooked and then stir in the peas and the finely chopped red onion.
  8. Serve the rice with the pumpkin curry.

Recipe reproduced with permission from shetlandchef.com

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