Roasted Hasselback Butternut Squash with Quinoa and Crispy Squash Seeds

I took a bit of a breather from blogging this past month and while I’ve missed the push to try  new recipes and ingredients, I’ve also really enjoyed sliding it off my plate for a while — no pun intended.  But I guess that’s the advantage of blogging for fun vs. blogging for a living…you can do whatever the hell you want, ha!

I figured I would jump back into things with a fantastic fall dish that I’ve actually made three times over the past month!  I first saw this recipe on Bon Appetit, with a few remakes on the Instagram stories of fellow Ambassador Erin Ireland.  I’ve experimented with different squash and tweaked the basting sauce a few times,  so I’m really loving the versatility of this dish.  Try the original or sub for your favorite ingredients, either way make this ASAP…

Roasted Hasselback Butternut Squash with Quinoa and Crispy Squash Seeds

  • 1 large butternut squash or any squash you prefer
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 pinch chili flakes
  • 1 pinch cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup organic agave syrup
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter (see below for vegan options)
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable broth
  • 1-2 dried bay leaves or springs fresh thyme
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon hemp hearts
  • 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted chopped pecans
  • 2 tablespoons fresh roasted squash seeds
  • Fresh ground salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Prepare the squash by peeling away the outer skin, then slicing in half length-wise and removing all the seeds. Rinse the seeds and spread them out on a small baking pan, season with salt and pepper and place in the oven to roast until golden brown. Rub the squash halves with coconut oil, season with salt and pepper and place in a roasting pan. Roast for 15-20 minutes, then remove from the oven and transfer to a cutting board to cool. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the chili flakes, cinnamon, syrup, butter, vinegar and broth.  Simmer for about ten minutes and reduce heat to low, just to keep warm. Using a sharp knife, make thin slices into the rounded sides of the squash, being careful not to cut all the way through.  Place the squash back in the roasting pan, season with salt and pepper and bay leaves or fresh thyme.  Roast for 40-60 minutes, basting with the glaze every ten minutes.  Remove from the oven and transfer to a serving platter, reserving glaze from the bottom of the pan.  In a small bowl, combine the chia seeds, hemp hearts, yeast, pecans and fresh toasted squash seeds.  Toss to combine and set aside until ready to use.

When plating, start with a bed of cooked quinoa and top with a section of roasted squash.  Garnish with a generous amount of the seed mixture and drizzle from the roasting pan.  Enjoy!

Note: in place of butter, substitute for your favorite nut butter or use 2 tablespoons vegetable oil and 1 tablespoon nut milk for a vegan option.

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