It’s fall, and you know what that means: warm sweaters and thick, fuzzy socks and well… everything pumpkin! And roasted butternut squash is definitely one of my favorite cold-weather comfort foods, just like apple pie is for others. Yep, I’ve been a member of the winter squash and pumpkin fan club for quite some time! I love using it in simple dishes that really show off its incredible, sweet flavour, like this simple roasted hokkaido pumpkin with almonds, feta and lemon recipe. The combination is simply DELISH!
Hokkaido pumpkin is full of good-for-you nutrients
Plus this recipe is full of lots of good-for-you vitamins! Hokkaido winter squash is a rich source of antioxidants and vitamin C, which means it is great at fighting ace-ecelerating free-radicals as well as for helping to build clear beautiful skin. Plus it is loaded with fiber, which aids in digestion, while also keeping you full for longer.
Roasting vegetables with avocado oil — the new kid on the block!
Oils, oils, oils. When it comes to cooking oils, there are oh so many to choose from. Yes, we all know and love olive oil, but it’s definitely not the only one you should be using. Like olive oil, avocado oil is high in monounsaturated fat (plus vitamin E, which is beneficial for your immune system especially as we enter cold season) and can be used as a replacement for olive oil in almost anything. Plus it has a high smoke point, which makes it great for frying, sautéing, and grilling.
When compared to coconut oil, it is also loved by the clean-eating community and surrounded by that same health food halo, but consider it better thanks to it’s neutral flavor. Plus it’s not chemically processed like canola and vegetable oil. Of course, it’s a bit more expensive than those more processed oils, but if you’re interested in avoiding refined foods, want a higher smoke point, and don’t mind the splurge, then this is a great alternative.
Winter squash makes a good vegetarian side dish
Winter squash becomes tender and sweeter when roasted making it a delicious side for a holiday dinner. You can pair this with a traditional Christmas dinner or serve this as part of a vegetarian menu. I love the combination of ingredients here and it is so easily adaptable. You do not absolutely need to use butternut squash for this dish to work. You can use this exact same technique with basically any kind of winter squash.
Looking for more delicious pumpkin or winter squash recipes?
Then try one of these delicious recipes:
- Roasted Hokkaido Pumpkin with Grünkern and Yoghurt Dressing
- Walnut Date Loaf with Hokkaido (Vegan + GF)
- Roasted Pumpkin and Tuscan Kale Salad with Goat Cheese and Candied Walnuts
- Ginger-Chili Oven Roasted Pumpkin and Bulgur Salad
Roasted Hokkaido Pumpkin with Feta
A healthy and delicious recipe for roasted Hokkaido pumpkin with feta, almonds and herbs. This recipe is a terrific side dish for any holiday meal. Vegetarian and gluten-free.
- ca. 1,3 kg Hokkaido pumpkin, seeds removed and cut into bite-sized pieces (no need to peel)
- 25 g ground almonds
- 100 g feta cheese, finely chopped or crumbled
- 1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
- 6-8 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped (ca. 1 teaspoon)
- finely grated zest from 1 organic lemon
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- a pinch of red pepper flakes (or to taste, I like 1/8 teaspoon)
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 2-3 tablespoon avocado oil (or olive oil)
- freshly squeezed juice from 1/2 lemon
- 3 tablespoon slivered almonds, lightly toasted
Preheat the oven to 375°F / 190°C and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the Hokkaido pumpkin pieces flat on the prepared baking sheet.
In a small bowl, mix together the ground almonds, feta, parsley, sage, lemon zest, garlic and chili flakes. Add a small pinch of salt (the feta is plenty salty) and freshly ground pepper, to taste.
Toss the pumpkin pieces in the avocado oil (I do this directly on the baking sheet). Spread in an even layer and then sprinkle with the feta-herb mixture evenly on top.
Transfer the baking sheet to the pre-heated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the pumpkin is tender when poked with a knife. Remove from the oven and drizzle with the freshly squeezed lemon juice.
Transfer to a serving plate and sprinkle with the toasted almonds. Finally, garnish with fresh parsley and a little more feta cheese (optional).
Serve immediately and enjoy warm!
- You can also use Butternut Squash instead of Hokkaido pumpkin.The great thing about Hokkaido pumpkin is that you can eat the skin too. So anyone who has struggled with cutting a butternut squash will understand how important that piece of the puzzle is. 😉
- This dish also tastes great served at room temperature.
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