Squash with fennel

A more sophisticated taste for squash

Most squash recipes end up being pretty sweet, close to pumpkin pie. This is a more savory recipe, and it’s also gluten-free and vegan. It looks dramatic on a platter, and can take the place of a roast for a vegan holiday dinner.

How to make squash with fennel:

Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut a butternut squash or an acorn squash into slices and scoop out the seeds; put the slices on a baking sheet in the oven to bake for an hour. Go work on side dishes. If you’re making this for vegans, dice some firm tofu, dredge it in cornstarch, and saute in oil until crispy.

When the squash is soft and a little caramelized (browned), take it out and let it cool. Meanwhile, make the fennel sauce. Grind a handful of fennel seeds in a mortar until they are crushed and releasing their licorice-like smell. Chop a handful of raisins and mix them with the fennel in a bowl. Add a large pinch each of salt and pepper, a handful of coriander, a handful of chopped parsley, cilantro, or both, a handful of chopped nuts (pistachios or hazelnuts), and 1/4 cup of lemon juice, or lime juice, or wine vinegar, and 1/4 cup of olive oil. Mix and spread over the cooked squash. If you want it vegan, scatter the crispy tofu on top; if not, crumble feta cheese over the top.

If you’re not serving this to vegetarians, it also makes a great side dish with a little grilled pork sausage.

Vegetarian or Vegan?

These make a great gluten-free, vegan main course with a salad on the side.

What can I do with leftover squash with fennel?

This is terrific heated up in the microwave, for about a week.

Published by Karen Carr

Dr. Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.

Leave a comment