Butternut Squash or Pumpkin Ragout

2 large onions
2 tbsp groundnut or vegetable oil
2 sprigs of rosemary
6 juniper berries
1 large butternut (or other) squash or small pumpkin
2 tbsp flour
500ml hot vegetable or chicken stock
1 glass of white wine
a few sprigs of parsley, finely chopped
  1. Peel and slice the onions, then let them soften in the oil over a low heat. I use a deep, heavy-based pan for this.
  2. Finely chop the rosemary needles, crush the juniper berries and add to the onions. Expect the onions to take 15-20 minutes to soften.
  3. Meanwhile peel (some you don't need to peel), seed and thinly slice the pumpkin. Small pieces, a centimetre thick and about the size of a large thumbnail, are very elegant with a main course of this sort. (I would probably make them larger for a less formal meal.)
  4. Leave to simmer for 5 minutes then sprinkle over the flour.
  5. Stir and continue cooking for 5 minutes.
  6. Pour in the stock and wine and bring to the boil.
  7. Season with salt and pepper and turn the heat down to a simmer.
  8. Leave, with the occasional stir, for 20 minutes until all is tender. Check the seasoning, stir in the chopped parsley and serve. This will reheat well if you wanted to prepare it earlier.
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