Sara Deseran’s Butternut Squash, Kale and Crunchy Pepitas Taco
Butternut Squash, Kale and Crunchy Pepitas Taco
4 to 6 servings
2/3 cup raw cashews
1 tsp. cumin seeds
6 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice (about 3 limes)
¼ cup water
2 tsp. kosher salt
2 tsp. vegetable oil
1/3 cup raw hulled pumpkin seeds
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ tsp. kosher salt
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
¾ cup finely chopped yellow onion
1 clove garlic, minced
3 cups ½-inch-diced butternut squash
1 tsp. chile powder
2 tsp. kosher salt
4 cups finely chopped kale
Corn tortillas, warmed for serving
Chopped fresh cilantro, white onion, and salsa for serving (optional)
• To make the crema, soak the raw cashews in room-temperature water to cover for at least 1 hour. Drain and reserve.
• Toast the cumin in a small, dry, heavy skillet over medium heat for about 1 minute, until fragrant. Transfer to a spice grinder, let cool, and grind finely.
• In a blender, combine the cashews, cumin, lime juice, water and salt. Start the blender on the lowest speed and gradually increase to the highest speed. Blend for at least 1 minute, until a creamy consistency. Pour into a serving bowl and set aside.
• To make the pumpkin seeds, heat the vegetable oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the pumpkin seeds and saute for about 2 minutes, taking care that they do not burn. The seeds will begin to puff up and pop. Once they appear toasted, immediately pour them into a bowl. Toss with the cayenne and salt and set aside.
• To make the filling, heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and saute for about 3 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and saute for about 1 minute more. Add the squash and saute for 6 to 7 minutes, just until the squash begins to soften. Season with the chile powder and salt.
• Add the kale and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute, until it begins to wilt. Remove from the heat, taste, and adjust the seasoning with salt if needed.
• Serve with the tortillas, crema, pumpkin seeds, onion, cilantro, and salsa. To assemble each taco, invite guests to spoon about ½ cup of the warm filling into a tortilla and top with some crema and pumpkin seeds. If guests want more toppings, they can finish off their tacos with onion, cilantro, and salsa.