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The other day I was on my way to Kabwe which is located in the central Province of Zambia.  Whilst driving, along the roadside I noticed a lot of market stalls where women gathered to sell a variety of fruits and vegetables.  I noticed a lot of watermelons and tropical fruits being sold, which looked absolutely beautiful, large and tasty; but something that particularly caught my eye was the Butternut squash – there were rows and rows of butter nut squash perched along the road.  Butternut squash is essentially a fruit, but it is used as a vegetable and can be roasted, toasted, puréed for soups, or mashed and used in casseroles, breads, and muffins. It is a delicious fruit (veg) and goes down a treat with nearly anything.

Preparation & Cooking time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4


  • 2 tbsps vegetable oil
  • 615g butternut squash, peeled and diced into cubes
  • 1 red onion, halved, sliced
  • 2 red bell peppers, seeded, sliced
  • 2 handfuls of peas, defrosted if frozen
  • 2 tbsp of garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsps of ginger , finely chopped
  • 2 tbsps of soy sauce (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

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Heat the oil in a wok over a medium-high heat.  Add the butternut squash and stir-fry for 5 minutes.

Add the onion and peppers followed by the peas, and stir-fry for an extra 5 to 10 minutes or until squash is fork-tender.  Then add garlic and ginger, fry for another 2 minutes, and season with salt, pepper and soy sauce.


This stir-fry is suitable for vegetarians, and goes very well with rice.  Similarly it can be eaten with chicken, fish or meat.  It is a great dish, with lots of flavour.  Personally I find butternut squash to be even better than pumpkin. Enjoy!!

Kanta Temba is a cake maker and decorator. She is also the owner and founder of Kanta Kakes – cake shop.

You can find her work on www.kantakakes.comFollow her on twitter @KantaKakes and Instagram @KantaTemba.

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  1. Hey Kanta thanks for this recipe. Last November travelling from the Copperbelt, I made a stop-over at Chobombo with my nephew and niece to buy some fruit and veggies. My young relatives bought some butternut but I avoided it because I had no idea how to prepare it!
    By the way, we had earlier made a stop over in Kabwe to visit my parents…


  2. You know. Despite the fact that I am Zambian I never knew anything about butternut squash. I’m so grateful for this Kanta you have educated me today ?



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