Butternut Squash Tagine with Chilli Couscous

Butternut Squash Tagine with Chilli Couscous with couscous in background
Population group Portion size
Primary, 7-10 years 264 g
Secondary, 11-18 years 353 g

A Moroccan-inspired tagine, which can be tweaked to include any other variety of squash available or carrots, turnips or courgettes.

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Gastronorm 1 x quarter 1/1 1 x half 1/1 1 x 1/1 2 x 1/1
Primary portions 8 16 32 64
Secondary portions 6 12 24 48
squash, butternut, raw 1000 g 2000 g 4000 g 8000 g
olive oil 26 ml 52 ml 104 ml 208 ml
onions, finely chopped 100 g 200 g 400 g 800 g
garlic, finely chopped 12 g 24 g 48 g 96 g
ground ginger 10 g 20 g 40 g 80 g
paprika powder 5 g 10 g 20 g 40 g
tomatoes, canned, whole contents 800 g 1600 g 3200 g 6400 g
red chillies, raw, split lengthways 20 g 40 g 80 g 160 g
coriander leaves, finely chopped 40 g 80 g 160 g 320 g
couscous 300 g 600 g 1200 g 2400 g
green chillies, raw chopped 10 g 20 g 40 g 80 g


Method for the Butternut Squash Tagine

1. Peel the butternut squash with a potato peeler. Cut in half widthways, then again lengthways, scoop out the seeds with a spoon, then cut into approximately 2 cm chunks. Reserve the peel and trim for stock.

2. Heat the olive oil in a pan, sauté the onions until softened, add the garlic and all the dry spices and cook ‘out’ for 2 minutes, until fragrant.

3. Add the tomatoes, red chillies and water and bring to the boil.

4. Add the butternut squash, season with black pepper and simmer for 30 minutes until the mixture has thickened and the squash is tender, adding more water if necessary.

5. Stir in the coriander and adjust the seasoning. Serve with Chilli Couscous (see below). And beware of the chillies!

Method for the Chilli Couscous

1. Place the couscous in a large bowl and sprinkle over the green chillies.

2. Pour the boiling water over the top and immediately cover with cling film. Leave for 2-3 minutes; remove film and fluff with a fork to loosen the couscous.

3. Stir in the coriander and serve.

Additional notes

High in iron

This dish is chef and author Maria Elia’s version of the amazing tagines she has had in Morocco. You can, of course, use any other variety of squash available or substitute carrots, turnips or courgettes. (The cooking time will vary slightly for each.)

Recipe by Maria Elia

Taken and adapted from The Modern Vegetarian by Maria Elia, published by Kyle Books. Photo by Jonathan Gregson.


Energy 67.6 kcal
Fat 1.5 g
SatFat 0.2 g
Carb 12.4 g
NMES 0 g
Fibre 1 g
Prot 1.8 g
Iron 1.5 mg
Calc 29.5 mg
Vit A 278.6 μg
Fol 18.6 μg
Vit C 16.2 mg
Sodium 17.2 mg
Zinc 0.1 mg