This week we continue with my Kabocha pumpkin themed Thanksgiving dinner. Often when you do something novel with a traditional dish, it involves some sort of sacrifice. You’re into it for a few bites because of its newness, but then you’re left craving your old favorite.
This is not one of those dishes. In fact, I can’t imagine going back to plain old mashed potatoes after having these.
Unlike most members of the pumpkin family, Kabocha has a starchy texture similar to potatoes. It’s lower in carbs and a great source of beta carotene, vitamin A and vitamin C, which means Kabocha not only tastes better than potatoes, it’s healthier too!
Kissed with a touch of natural sweetness, mashed kabocha pumpkins make the perfect side dish at your Thanksgiving table. Cover it with savory gravy or grate some extra cheese on top and enjoy it with your turkey and cranberries for a change of pace.
While these were delicious, next week’s savory Kabocha bread pudding is shaping up to be a great change from your tired old stuffing, so stay tuned!
- 1 medium kabocha pumpkin (2-3 pounds)
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup half and half
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 100 grams gruyere cheese, shredded
- Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out all the seeds and pith. Peel all the green skin off the pumpkin and cut into 1” chunks. Prepare a steamer and steam the pumpkin until tender (15-20 minutes).
- Mash the steamed pumpkin, or pass it through a potato ricer. In a microwave safe bowl, combine the butter, half and half and salt and heat for 1 minute, or until the salt and butter are melted.
- Pour half the heated cream mixture into the mashed Kabocha and stir to combine. Continue adding the cream mixture and stirring until you are happy with the texture (you may not need all of it). Add the cheese and stir to combine.
Yield: 6-8 servings
Marc Matsumoto is a culinary consultant and recipe repairman who shares his passion for good food through his website norecipes.com. For Marc, food is a life long journey of exploration, discovery and experimentation and he shares his escapades through his blog in the hopes that he inspires others to find their own culinary adventures. Marc’s been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today, and has made multiple appearances on NPR and the Food Network.