Thursday, August 07, 2014

Recipe : Roasted Pumpkin (Vegan)

When we visited Canada a couple of years ago for a cousins wedding, we had a BBQ at U Ossie & Aunty Aureen's house and one of my (many, many) aunts - Belinda (who hates being called "Aunty" by me cause it makes her feel "old" LOL) roasted some butternut squash which was amazingly tasty.

Seeing that we don't get a variety of squashes in India, I hadn't had the opportunity to try making this myself. Today though, I saw some lovely red baby pumpkins in the market and remembering this recipe, I picked one up.

Sadly for me, the pumpkin wasn't ripe enough, so the end product was missing the sweetness, but I think the flavours worked very well and I will ask for help to select a ripe pumpkin next time and retry this recipe.

I could have added some brown sugar to this while baking, but this week is diet week and sugar and sweeteners are off the menu.

Its quite easy to assemble and takes about 10 minutes to prep (depending on the size of your pumpkin) and then another 45 minutes in the oven that you can use to prepare the rest of your meal or just have a bath or a glass of wine while the pumpkin is roasting.

Ingredients :
1/2 kg ripe pumpkin or Squash
6-8 cloves garlic chopped
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder (you can also use all spice)
1 tsp chilli flakes
sea salt to taste
1/2 tsp of olive oil

Preheat your oven to 180C / 355F.
Clean and chop the pumpkin (you can retain the separated seeds for roasting)
Place the pumpkin pieces in an ovenproof bowl
Add the chopped garlic, cinnamon powder, chilli flakes, sea salt and olive oil.

Toss or stir till it is all well combined.
I used my hands and gave all the pieces a light massage with the spices.
If you feel the pumpkin isn't sweet enough, add a bit of brown sugar too.

Roast in the oven for 30-55 minutes.
(if you have cut your pumpkin into chunks, it will take closer to 55minutes, if you have sliced it fine, it should be done in around 30 minutes - ripeness of the pumpkin is also a factor in how long it will take to cook)
Serve hot

Kim's Tips for Leftovers :
While, I was roasting the pumpkin in the microwave, I placed the seeds in an ovenproof glass lid and slid it under the wire rack on which the pumpkin dish was placed. The roasted seeds can be lightly seasoned and eaten as a healthy snack or tossed into salads where they provide fibre and crunch.

If you don't feel like eating leftover roasted pumpkin for a second meal, give the pumpkin a whiz in the food processor until finely blended. Add some chicken or vegetable stock (till you get your desired consistency) and bring to a boil with some fresh herbs and cream to garnish.

You can even mix the roasted pumpkin pieces into a green leafy salad for an alternate texture and a sweet flavour that goes well with bitter leaves.

Kim's Tips:
While I piled all the pumpkin into one dish (given the limited size of my microwave oven), the better spaced the pumpkin pieces are, the better will be the caramelisation of the pumpkin.

The skin adds fiber to the dish, but you can remove it if you prefer.

This post is also being submitted for Round 2 of the Indiblogger & Borosil #BeautifulFood Competition

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