March Madness: Miso-Curry Delicata Squash

Most of you earth-loving Evergreen Girls know that adopting a plant-based diet is one of the kindest things we can do for our planet.

I choose to buy and cook vegetarian – and, when possible, vegan – foods, because plant-based foods nourish and sustain me without negatively impacting our Earth and the creatures that inhabit it. Regardless of your own preference for plant-based foods, you will not be able to resist this recipe, adopted from one of my favorite cookbooks, Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Everyday. It’s one of my favorite recipes, because, not only is it vegan and unbelievably delicious, but it consists entirely of super foods – those packed with nutrients that nourish our strong and glorious bodies.

The star of this dish is my favorite winter squash, the delicata.

This creamy, nutty squash caramelizes beautifully in the oven (and has edible skin!) Then there’s the magnesium rich kale, miso that’s full of probiotics for gut health and healthy digestion, detoxifying cilantro, and pumpkin seeds (or pepitas) with heart-loving Omega 3’s and zinc to fight off that winter cold. Throw in a few potatoes for extra fiber and tofu for vegan protein, and you’ve got yourself a complete meal. The result is a festive marriage between the umami of the miso-curry sauce and the buttery, maple sweetness from the delicata, supplemented by the boldness of cilantro and pepita. You will love it.

Do yourself a favor and whip up this simple and vibrant dish tonight; it only takes about fifteen minutes to prep and twenty-five minutes of hands-off oven time. You can pour yourself a big glass of red wine (I’m drinking a luscious Mendozan malbec at the moment), and plan your next adventure while your kitchen fills with buttery, curry-scented warmth.

Your body – and Mother Nature – will thank you!

Ingredients:

(please taste test and add/subtract ingredients as you see fit!)

  • 12 oz delicata squash (about 2 small ones)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup white miso
  • 1 Tbsp red Thai curry paste
  • 8 ounces extra-firm tofu, cut into small cubes
  • 4 medium new potatoes cut into chunks
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups chopped kale, tough stems removed (the recipe doesn’t call for dino kale, but I recommend it)
  • ½ cup pepitas, toasted
  • ⅔ cup chopped cilantro

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees with a rack in the middle of the oven.
  2. Cut the delicata in half lengthwise and use a spoon to clear out all the seeds. Cut into ½ inch thick half-moons.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together olive oil, miso, and curry-paste. Combine the tofu, potatoes, and squash in a large bowl with ½ cup of the miso-curry paste. Use your hands to toss well, then turn the vegetables onto a rimmed baking sheet and arrange along a single layer.
  4. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until everything is tender and browned (and the potatoes are crispy!) Toss once or twice during roasting.
  5. In the meantime, whisk the lemon juice into the remaining miso-curry paste, then stir in the kale until coated.
  6. When the veggies and tofu are done roasting, toss them with the kale, pepitas, and cilantro. Enjoy!