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Roasted Squash with Pine Nuts

A wooden table, red and white napkins, with a gray plate with cubes of roasted squash, sprinkled with sea salt, thyme sprigs, and pine nuts.
Delicata Squash is my preferred squash for this recipe, not only for its pretty (and edible!) skin, but also for its mild flavor. It carries the slightly exotic flavors of the spices and also allows the distinct cedar-like taste of pine nuts to shine. Serve this side dish alongside roasted fowl for a classic autumnal meal with a bit of a twist.
Kate Shaffer

Prep 15 mins
Cook 45 mins
Total 1 hr
Sides
American
4 servings
198 kcal

Ingredients 

  • 2 (1 1/2 to 2 lbs) delicata squashes seeded and cut into 3/4-inch (20 mm) cubes, or substitute peeled butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for baking sheet
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 pinch granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves chopped, plus extra sprigs for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup (1 oz) pine nuts*

Directions 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • In a large bowl, toss squash with olive oil, cumin, coriander, sugar, thyme, salt, and pepper.
  • Slick a rimmed baking sheet with a light coating of oil. Spread seasoned squash in a single layer on baking sheet and roast until golden and tender, 40 to 45 minutes.
  • In a dry skillet over medium-low heat, toast pine nuts until fragrant and golden, stirring often, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Transfer roasted squash to a large serving bowl. Scatter toasted pine nuts over squash and garnish with extra sprigs of thyme. Serve immediately.

Notes

*What can I substitute for pine nuts?

Pine nuts are absolutely one of the tastiest nuts out there (actually...they're seeds) but they're also one of the most expensive. And occasionally they can be hard to find.
So what to do? Cashews have a remarkably similar flavor, as do pumpkin seeds. Almonds and pistachios are often used in cuisines that also favor pine nuts so, depending on what you're doing, they might be a suitable option too.