Roasted kabocha squash with pepita crumble

All the flavors of classic pumpkin pie, but with way more nutrients.

Private chef Lauren Gerrie, like many of us, names pumpkin pie as a favorite holiday staple. Here, she shares a healthy, elevated version of the classic dish that is excellent for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. “The coolest thing about my adaptation of this recipe,” says Gerrie, “is that like pumpkin pie, it almost gets better the day after...and the day after that (if it lasts that long). I also love that the two components of the dish can be eaten separately; any leftover squash could be pureed into an earthy soup and the pepita crumble is great as a decadent cereal.”

For the roasted Kabocha squash:
1 Kabocha squash (about 4 lbs)
½ cup maple syrup
½ cup grapeseed oil
1 tbsp Kosher salt

2 tsp chili powder
½ tsp allspice
1 tsp Vietnamese cinnamon (You can also use Mexican or regular cinnamon)

Directions for the roasted Kabocha squash:

1. Heat oven to 400˚ and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, then spray with coconut oil non-stick goodness.

2. Cut the squash in half and scoop out all seeds, wash and set aside to use for your favorite roasted seed recipe.

3. Cut the halved squash into ½ pieces.

4. In a bowl or Ziploc bag, combine all ingredients and toss/mix to coat completely.

5. Place the squash on the sheet tray and roast for about 35 minutes, or until tender to the touch. Remove and allow to cool completely.

Note:The last step can bedone ahead of time. Allowing the squash to sit overnight in the fridge lets it marinate, bringing out even more flavor.

Gluten-free oat & pepita crumble (yields 4 cups):
2 cups gluten-free oats
½ cup gluten-free flour
1 cup roasted/unsalted pepitas or “Austrian Pumpkin Seeds"
1 tsp Vietnamese cinnamon
1 ½ cups coconut sugar
1 tsp Kosher salt
½ tsp cracked pepper
1/3 cup + 2 tbsp coconut oil

Directions for the gluten-free oat & pepita crumble:

1. Heat oven to 350˚ and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

2. In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients and pepitas.

3. Add coconut oil and stir until mixture comes together and feels a bit wet.

4. Spread oat mixture onto prepared sheet tray and bake for 20-25 minutes.

5. Allow mixture to cool completely and then place in air tight container.

To plate:Break cooled squash into 2" pieces, sprinkle with a generous amount of crumble, then drizzle maple syrup and olive oil.

Optional:Top with micro shiso or torn basil for extra brightness.

Also in this series: Pan Seared Lemon Sole with Cranberry Salsa and Haricots Verts with Cashew Cream & Pickled Mushrooms