Roasted Butternut Squash with Kale and Almond Pecan Parmesan

Happy Friday friends! Are you happy the weekend is only hours away?!  We are!  But before it has officially arrived I have one more recipe for you:-) Last night when my husband realized what we were eating for dinner he got very excited and told me it was one of his favorite things that I make.  I teased him and said that he says that at least once a week.  It turns out that if he could only pick one favorite, this recipe would be it!  I had no idea.  This has now moved to number one on my list of what-to-make-when-I-can’t-think-of-something-new.

I cannot take credit for the recipe though.  I found it on one of my favorite food blogs, Oh She Glows.  She has a healthy vegan blog and her recipes are wonderful.  She is definitely someone I look up to.  Now I would never want anyone to abandon my ship, but if you are looking for an additional blog (not a replacement) I would definitely recommend checking hers out.  Here is a link to her original recipe since the recipe I am sharing below has some slight modifications.  Even though I am not vegan, I still love vegan blogs because they have such great ideas (though sometimes I add meat to a vegan recipe — sorry vegans!).

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The main ingredient in this dish is… butternut squash!  Don’t you just love butternut squash?  So I have been thinking recently about how interesting the variety in which produce bleeds is.  I think everyone realizes that a tree bleeds (sap) when it is cut, but I have never really thought much about produce bleeding.  Well I chop a lot of produce and since I photograph my food now I have started paying more attention to the details.  Onions seem to milk when you cut them, a milky white liquid that spills out onto the cutting board.  Yams when they are cut have a white substance that comes out of its pours.  It isn’t runny like onions just little white dots that go away after a white.  A butternut squash bleeds too, though it looks more like tears or dew on an early morning.  Isn’t that cool?!

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I think squash is so pretty:-) Once it is peeled and the top, bottom and seeds are removed you can cut the squash into small cubes and place them into the casserole dish.  With them the garlic, onion, cilantro, olive oil and salt go into the dish and into the oven for 40-45 minutes (400 F).

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While the squash is roasting, you can prepare the toppings.  The kale will go onto the squash first, so tear the leaves off the stems and roughly chop the leaves into smaller pieces.  I made this recipe for my amazing mother once and the situation felt like the roles were reversed — I was the mom and she was the little kid.  I told her the dinner had kale in it and she replied that she didn’t like kale.  I tried to convince her that cooked kale tastes different than raw kale and that she should at least try it because I thought she would really like the recipe.  We had that conversation in circles for what seemed like most of the day… in the end she ate it like a good mommy and loved it.  (I love you Mom!)

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The last part to this recipe is the parmesan topping.  Now as this is a vegan recipe and since I myself don’t cook with dairy, for the time being, it shouldn’t surprise you that there is no actual cheese in this recipe. This parmesan is comprised of almonds, pecans, nutritional yeast, olive oil and salt.  We have talked about nutritional yeast before.  If you want a little refresher, check out the Crustless Vegetable Quiche post.  Since nutritional yeast has a cheese like quality a lot of vegans use it in “cheese” mixtures.  I won’t try to convince you that the topping will taste like cheese… but I will tell you that it is good:-)  After the squash is tender add the kale and parmesan to the casserole dish and stick it back in the oven, heat reduced to 350 F, for another 5 minutes or so.

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Roasted Butternut Squash with Kale and Almond Pecan Parmesan

Butternut Squash (2-2.5 lbs)

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ onion, diced

¼ C cilantro, finely chopped

½ t salt

½ T olive oil

2-3 Leaves of kale, roughly chopped

 

¼ C almonds, chopped

¼ C pecans, chopped

1 T nutritional yeast

¼ t salt

1 t olive oil

  1. Heat the oven to 400 F.
  2. Peel squash and cut off the top and bottom of the squash.  Cut in half and remove seeds and guts.  Cut the squash into small chunks and place into casserole dish.
  3. Add garlic, onion, cilantro, oil and salt to the casserole dish.  Do not add the kale yet.
  4. Place dish with lid into the oven and cook for 40-45 minutes or until the squash is tender enough to fork.
  5. While the squash is in the oven add almonds, pecans, nutritional yeast, salt and oil to a small bowl.  Stir everything together and set aside.  This will be your “parmesan” to put on top.
  6. Once the squash is tender add in the kale and parmesan ingredients and stir everything together.  Reduce the heat to 350F place the casserole dish back into the oven for another 5-8 minutes.  Watch closely to make sure the nuts don’t burn.  Serve immediately if possible:-) Salt and pepper to taste.

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2 thoughts on “Roasted Butternut Squash with Kale and Almond Pecan Parmesan

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