M left yesterday and for 24 hours, I’ve been an on-again, off-again wreck.

I am 75% excited for this new adventure and 25% melancholy.  I’m excited that we’re starting a new life adventure, to live someplace new, and to move forward towards new life goals.  It’s hard for me to fathom that only a little over a month ago were we not talking about any of this.  I am always amazed at what can happen when “craziness” doesn’t factor in to decisions.

This reminds me that just a couple weeks ago I had to ask my students what YOLO meant (and yes, I’m serious about that).  One of my students piped up and said, “it’s like your generation’s carpe diem.” Life is all about adventure and if I’m not open to that, I feel like I miss so much.

I pushed M to apply for this job, knowing full well that if it worked out, we would be apart for six months.  I’m still okay with that- it’s going to be hard, but there is skype, winter breaks, spring breaks, and planes.

What I’m really struggling with is this idea that we’re starting something serious and I’m not right there with him.  For the first time I can start seeing that we will be in an area where we could finally settle down, buy a house, and start a family.  I’ve never had that feeling before- we’ve always been moving around or in school; both of us not knowing what we wanted to do or who we were.

I don’t think either of those statements are true anymore (and it only took us 4 1/2 years to figure it out).  I am amazingly proud of him for taking such a huge leap and like I said, my 25% melancholy is primarily for the fact that he’s doing something crazy and I’m not living it with him.

I whipped this skillet up for lunch as some comfort food.  I find a big plate of anything with curry to be quite comforting.  This recipe is a riff on the paella that Alex and Sonja showed me how to make.  I love the idea that I can toss all of this in to one skillet and in about 45 minutes have a complete (vegan) meal.

Feel free to sub sweet potatoes for butternut squash and play around the curry seasonings.  One of my goals this winter is to play around with making my own curry blends (of which I will share!)  But for right now, I’m hooked on a few different curry powders I purchased from Penzys. 

5.0 from 2 reviews
Curried Butternut Squash and Brown Rice Skillet
Recipe type: vegetarian main course
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-3
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups 1/2" cubed butternut squash
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
  • ½ cup short grain brown rice
  • 3/4 cup stewed tomatoes
  • ½ cup chickpeas (drained/rinsed if using canned)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1¼ cup vegetable broth
  1. In a 8″ cast iron skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Stir in diced onion and minced garlic, cooking for 4-5 minutes. Add in butternut squash and cook for 2-3 minutes. Next, add 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder and ½ cup brown rice; cook for one minute.
  2. Next, add the stewed tomatoes with their juice, ½ cup chickpeas, and ½ teaspoon of salt and pepper. Give a good stir and cook until tomatoes start to boil, 3-4 minutes.
  3. Finally, carefully pour in 1¼ veggie broth. (The broth will be up to the edge of the pan but will reduce down from there.) Bring broth to a boil and the reduce to medium-low.
  4. Continue to let cook without stirring until rice has absorbed almost all the liquid, roughly 45 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.