Here is a recipe that is cheap and easy, just like Dyke's mom. But it looks expensive, so you can show off to your friends.
Again, I'm going with squash, but it's acorn squash this time. Keep in mind, squash is in season, therefore, it's cheap right now.
Chicken Curry in Roasted Acorn Squash
1 small Acorn Squash (2 pounds. It also doesn't matter what color you use)
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size chunks
1 red bell pepper, cut into bite-size chunks
1 small onion, also cut into bite-size chunks
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. curry powder
1/2 cup milk (I use low fat milk, but you can use cream or whole milk if you so desire)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped (optional)
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut squash in half, and pull out the guts (I keep the seeds to roast later for salads or a quick snack). Once cleaned, rub 1/2 the olive oil over the squash. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place face side up (I cut the bottom off to make it stable), and bake until fork tender, which is about 25 minutes. If you do use larger squash, go about 40 minutes. You want it a nice golden color, but not burnt.
Meanwhile, add the rest of the olive oil to a large saute pan. Once it's warm, add the chicken, onion, pepper, and raisins (if using). Let saute for about 5 minutes, until the chicken is no longer pink on the outside, then add the milk, curry powder, and a dash of salt and pepper. Let simmer over low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
Once the squash is done, spoon the chicken curry mixture into the squash. Garnish with cilantro (if using).
Now this is something I thought I would hate, but I absolutely loved. We had it for dinner on Tuesday, and Jay was very thankful. It is quick and easy, but nice enough to serve to friends. The most expensive thing is the squash, and if you get it at a farmers marker, or even at the pumpkin patch (which is where we got ours), it can cost less than 50 cents per pound. I always have chicken breasts in my freezer, and curry powder lasts forever. And who doesn't have milk all the time?
I personally detest raisins in food (I like them alone, but in things is gross), and Jay detests cilantro, so we don't use that either. But keeping these out does not change the greatness of this dish.