Butternut squash is the velvety, sweet winter squash variety that when transformed through the magic of roasting, makes an amazing base for a variety of dishes.
I came across this recipe from Oh She Glows and was smitten with the ingenious idea of turning squash into a creamy, cheese-like sauce to coat roast veggies or grains or over noodles (GF corn penne variety shown here) or spiralized yellow squash. Mixed with some greens it makes a satisfying, exciting meal. This is a twist from the usual path I take with veggie recipes as it is so unapologetically bad-for-you in appearance and full of pure childhood delight in nature. This has an incredibly rich texture and addicting depth of flavor. No non-vegan or veggie hating monster could say no to this-I hope!
from Angela Liddon of Oh She Glows
- 1/4 cup raw cashews, soaked
- 1 (3.5-4 pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and diced (or two (450g) packages chopped squash)
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional, but recommended)
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, or to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon liquid smoke
- hot sauce, to taste
- 1 (450g) package mini shell or macaroni pasta (use gluten-free, if desired)
- roasted broccoli or sauteed kale leaves, to stir into pasta
1/ Soak cashews in water for 3-4 hours until soft/plump. Drain and set aside.
2/ Preheat oven to 425F and bake chopped & peeled squash with oil & salt for 30-40 minutes, until fork tender. Cool at least 5 minutes.
3/ Add the soaked and drained cashews, water, garlic, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, onion powder, paprika, chili powder, and 2 cups of cooked squash into a high speed blender or into a deep bowl for immersion blending. Blend until smooth. Now add the salt, liquid smoke, and hot sauce to taste and blend again.
4/Cook pasta or prepare squash noodles. If using any veggies for add-ins, roast/saute those at this point too.
5/Add pasta or noodles back into your pot or bowl and cover with desired amount of sauce. Stir in the cooked vegetables, if using. Cook over medium until heated throughout and combined.