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At this time of year, I turn to old favorites like butternut squash for comfort food and for easy meal ideas. Butternut squash is one of my favorite fall-to-winter ingredients because it’s just so darned versatile! Make a pie with it? Sure! Side dish? Gotcha covered! Main dish? … Actually, yes! With this hearty blend of butternut squash, nuts and seeds, it makes a delicious meal where you might have offered soup instead. (In fact, if you add water or your favorite milk to this dish, it actually makes a mean soup, too!). That’s right: Gluten Free Tamari Butternut Squash, Nuts and Seeds for dinner — you heard it here first, folks.
I’ve used Tamari here for a few reasons. One: butternut squash is naturally sweet (see pie note above — use in place of pumpkin and no one will be the wiser!). Two: Tamari is delicious. Seriously. Ever reach for soy sauce for your sushi, steak or gee, I dunno, anything else you where you want an extra savory sumthin’ sumthin’? Tamari is your answer.
Wait – what’s Tamari and isn’t it just soy sauce? Well, yes and no. In fact, if you’re a true soy sauce connoisseur, I would argue (successfully) that you should be using Tamari instead. Tamari is the real deal. It’s basically what was introduced to Japan from China in the 7th century A.D. It’s full of protein from fermented soybeans, not cut with cheap wheat like ordinary soy sauce. Which means … it’s also naturally gluten free! Because it’s not diluted with any cheap ingredients, it’s also richer and has a deeper, smoother, more complex taste than run-of-the-mill soy sauce.
And when it comes to Tamari, I’ve always chosen San-J®.* All San-J products are certified gluten-free by GFCO (can I get applause, here?!) and they only use authentic Japanese brewing processes which take up to six months from soybean to bottle. This small batch process is why their products taste better — there’s just more depth of flavor. Which means that when you add it to naturally sweet butternut squash — and even nuts and seeds — the flavor really wows.
There is just So. Much. Going. On. in this recipe. Seriously! You won’t believe it when you try it! I could eat the butternut squash portion of the dish all on its own. Or the nuts. Or the seeds. Or any delicious combination of all!
So I encourage you to try any portion, or all, of this recipe with San-J® Tamari (they have 5 varieties: Black Label; White Label — reduced sodium; Gold Label — organic; Platinum Label — organic & reduced sodium; and Green Label — low sodium, lite). And to encourage you even further, San-J is giving three lucky readers a prize pack to try for themselves! Each winner will receive one Tamari variety, one Asian Cooking Sauce (their Thai Peanut Sauce is my family’s favorite – check out my Pad Thai Recipe!); a San-J apron and coupons (who doesn’t love coupons?!).
Enter to win through the Rafflecopter widget below.
*San-J has sponsored this post. As always, I only work with brands I love and trust; please see my disclosure policy for more information. Thank you for supporting brands that support my gfJules recipe blog and allow me to continue to bring great new gluten free recipes to you!
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Preheat oven to 450°F.
Peel and cube squash, discarding the strings and seeds.
Arrange cubes on a foil-lined baking sheet drizzled with oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper, to taste, then drizzle another tablespoon of oil on top of the cubes.
Bake for approximately 50 minutes, or until fork tender and soft.
Transfer to a large flat-bottomed bowl or to a food processor. Mash or process to desired smoothness, leaving some chunks or process until completely smooth – your choice.
Stir in Tamari, tahini/or/nut butter, maple syrup and spices. Taste, and add more salt or pepper or cayenne, if preferred.
Serve garnished with Tamari Nuts and Seeds.
Preheat oven to 400° F.
Line a small rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and measure out nuts and seeds, distributing evenly on parchment. Bake for 7-8 minutes; watch to be sure they do not burn.
Meanwhile, mix Tamari, maple syrup and cayenne in a medium sized bowl.
After 7-8 minutes, remove nuts and seeds and transfer to the bowl with the Tamari mixture. Toss to coat well. Return to the parchment-lined sheet and distribute evenly.
Reduce heat to 350°F and bake for another 15 minutes.
Remove and stir with a wooden spoon to separate. The nuts and seeds will stick together as they cool.
To serve, portion bowls of Tamari Butternut Squash topped with Tamari Nuts and Seeds, as well as pomegranate seeds, if desired.