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I have been dreaming of delicata for quite some time now.
Between the dense deliciousness of kabocha squash and the simple elegance of delicata, I have a hard time deciding which winter squash truly wins my heart.

Today it is the delicata.

The sweet gourd has been in season for several weeks ~ or even months ~ now. Yet, with the way of life and the circumstances that have been my surround, I simply have yet to make “it” happen.

My Delicata Day has arrived.

Dusted with a hint of hibiscus, colorful cracked pepper, and a dash of vanilla salt, this became a winter pleasure, indeed.

And, coupled with a subtly sweet coconut cream sauce, served over sautéed kale and wild elk, we are all utterly impressed.

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Hibiscus Peppercorn Dusted Delicata

2 medium delicata squash, halved, cleaned and sliced
1 Tbs. dried hibiscus, crushed
2-3 tsp. vanilla salt 
2 tsp. ground pepper
1-2 Tbs. melted coconut oil

1/2 lb. ground elk meat
1 Tbs. coconut oil
1 small shallot, thinly sliced
3/4 cup full fat coconut milk
2 tsp. vanilla salt
1 tsp. ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Toss delicata with spices and coconut oil, coating well. On a parchment lined baking dish, even spread squash and roast about 25 minutes, or until soft.

Over medium heat in a large skillet, begin to brown the meat and shallot in melted coconut oil. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and add coconut milk. Allow to simmer and reduce for approximately 20 minutes.

Toss all deliciousness together and serve over wilted greens.

 

The Huntsman quite enjoyed the dish as well.

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