Roasting is one of my favorite ways to cook just about anything — vegetables, chicken, shrimp, even fruit. It's hard to beat the caramelization and depth of flavor you get from roasting. It's a great paleo cooking technique. When you roast something, it pretty much cooks itself so there is very little hands-on time. And you get a lot of flavor from the food without having to add a lot of extra ingredients. Most things need only a quick toss in olive oil, salt and pepper. Or if you can roast it whole in its skin, you really don't need to add anything to it.
This is the easiest way to roast a whole squash or pumpkin. Wash the squash, stab it a few times to make steam holes and put it in the oven until it's soft. That's it. No wrestling with the squash to cut through the tough skin, no peeling, no chopping. Once it's roasted, it will cut open like butter. Scoop the seeds out with a spoon and peel the skin off with your fingers (make sure you let it cool first so you don't burn your hands). I use this method whenever the squash will be mashed or pureed. The flesh can be used right away, or frozen until needed. I usually freeze the pureed squash in one cup portions for easy use in recipes like soup, pie and breads.
I also use this method to roast spaghetti squash. Once it's roasted, cut it around the equator and scoop out the seeds. Use a fork to separate the spaghetti squash “noodles” in each half.
How to Roast a Whole Squash or Pumpkin
- 1 whole squash or pumkin
- Set oven to 375 degrees.
- Wash squash, cut a few deep slits to release steam and place squash in baking dish.
- Roast squash until soft and easily pierced, 1 to 1-1/2 hours depending on size of squash.
- Cut squash open and allow to cool until cool enough to handle, then remove seeds and peel.