I suppose I have to admit that winter is upon us. The leaves are dropping from the trees in rapid succession, some of them are already bare, others are hanging on to their golden nuggets until those blustery winter winds finally win the battle and send them heading to the ground. Soon we’ll be hanging Christmas decorations (most of you probably already have) and before we know it welcoming in a new year. I’m not quite ready to let go of autumn yet so I’ve been taking quite a few photos of our weekend walks before winter is well and truly here and I forget all about those sometimes golden, sometimes grey skies.
I am also enjoying all things butternut squash. You have been warned. Last weekend when I was hunting around for something to eat for lunch I reached for the River Cottage Veg book which always seems to yield something tasty and easy that I can throw together. The recipe uses sourdough as the bread of choice, which I am sure would be the way to go, however since I’ve yet to try making gluten free sourdough, sub whatever gluten free bread you have. It will still taste fantastic, I promise. Here the slightly sweet, caramelized flavour of the roasted squash is balanced out by melted goat’s cheese, toasted pecans and it’s all finished off with a drizzle of honey. I threw in some kale too, but you should expect that of me by now.
Recipe adapted from River Cottage Veg Everyday! by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
A handful of toasted pecans (or nut of choice)
1 tablespoon olive oil
200-250g butternut squash, peeled and cut into bite size cubes
2 leaves of cavolo nero kale (optional) stems removed and chopped
1 teaspoon dried rosemary or thyme
50g goat’s cheese (I used hard goat’s cheese, you could also use cheddar)
2 thick slices of gluten free bread, toasted
A trickle of clear honey
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 6, 200°C, 400°F
Line a baking sheet with parchment. Lay the squash out in a single layer, sprinkle with rosemary and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for about 30 – 40 minutes until the squash is tender and beginning to caramelize around the edges. If you are using the kale I add this to the pan five minutes before the squash is ready. You just want the kale wilted in the heat of the oven.
When the squash is nearly ready light the grill and lightly toast the bread. Remove from the grill and top with the squash, kale, goat’s cheese, pecans and finish with a drizzle of honey. Return to the grill and cook until the cheese is melted and bubbling.