Recently I professed my first trials of what seems to be the most popular new food among healthy bloggers, kabocha squash. This hearty winter squash is sold with the others … acorn, butternut, spaghetti … but it of course has its own nuances. After I gained my bearings with the flavors and cooking times of kabocha, I decided to experiment a bit. This Asian-Spiced Kabocha offers a wonderful side dish (or breakfast as I like to eat it) that is slightly sweet and spicy, and is a breeze to cook up.
From start to finish, I had the kabocha ready in 20 minutes, and that was with minimal monitoring required. It was definitely a nice change from my usual roasting or steaming techniques with squash. Like most other winter squashes, kabocha is a bear to cut, but, on the bright side, no peeling is required! The skin offers a pleasant and unique texture to this asian-spiced kabocha dish.
No kabocha at your store? Have no fear; this recipe should also work well with your standard acorn or butternut squash variety.
Special Diet Notes: Asian-Spiced Kabocha
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, nut-free, peanut-free, vegan, plant-based, vegetarian, and optionally gluten-free.
- ¾ lb kabocha squash, cut in smallish chunks (about 1-inch in size, skin on)
- ⅓ cup water, plus additional if needed
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce or wheat-free tamari (for gluten-free)
- 1-1/2 tablespoons evaporated cane juice, brown sugar, or granulated palm sugar
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
- ⅜ teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder (available in the spice section of most grocers)
- Place all ingredients in a skillet and heat to boiling. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove the lid and continue to cook (stirring occasionally) until the liquid is pretty much gone / thickened, and the squash (and peel) is nice and tender. This takes me about 5 minutes, but if the liquid evaporates and your squash isn’t yet done to your liking, add more water 1 tablespoon at a time, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally. Serve.