Meanwhile, cut the butternut squash into 1/2-inch chunks, getting rid of any seeds and gnarly bits (there’s no need to peel it). Put a smaller pan on a high heat. Add a lug of olive oil and the squash.
Stir in the thyme leaves and the garam masala. Pop a lid on the pan and cook for around 10 minutes on a medium heat, stirring every few minutes, until softened and golden.
Add a cup of rice to the pan with 2 cups of water and a good pinch of salt and pepper.
Replace the lid and cook for around 8 minutes on a medium heat, then turn the heat off and leave to steam for 8 minutes with the lid on.
Fluff up the rice and tip it into the soup. Have a taste, and season if needed. Gently mix together, then divide among your soup bowls with a good dollop of plain yogurt. Scatter over the cilantro leaves and add a sprinkling of fresh chili, if you like.
This recipe is from “Jamie Oliver’s Great Britain,” by Jamie Oliver (Hyperion, $35). Oliver delivers best of the old and new (including classic British immigrant food) in his first cookbook focused on England.
ROASTED CARROT SOUP
6 to 8 large carrots (about 1 3/4 pounds), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
1/4 cup olive oil
6 cups vegetable stock, or as needed
A 1-inch-long piece fresh ginger, peeled
1 fresh thyme sprig, plus chopped thyme for garnish
1/2 large sweet onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
Freshly ground black pepper
Set an oven rack 6 to 8 inches from the heat source and turn on the broiler. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the carrots with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt. Broil the carrots until they brown and soften, turning them over with a spatula every 5 minutes or so; this should take 15 to 20 minutes.