In this easy recipe for hasselback pumpkin, maple syrup and sage butter are used to infuse every part of the crisp roasted pumpkin.
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COOK. STORE. SAVE.
Clever storage: Transfer leftovers to an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to 3 days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.
The term ‘hasselback’ means to make thin, even cuts crossways into a fruit or vegetable without cutting all the way through. It was a technique that originated in a restaurant in Sweden in the 1940s and is usually used for potatoes. In hasselback pumpkin, the final dish looks like multiple discs of pumpkin arranged tightly together. It’s a technique that creates extra surface area so you can pack in extra flavour, in this case, the distinctive flavours of sage and mustard, plus walnuts for added crunch and maple syrup for extra sweetness. Best of all, it’s easier to make than it looks!
For more ideas, check out our collection of easy pumpkin recipes for inspiration.
Ensure the knife you will use to chop and slice the pumpkin is nice and sharp. Blunt knives can be dangerous. To peel the pumpkin skin safely, you can either use a vegetable peeler or microwave the pumpkin first. Use a fork to poke it all over, put it in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for about 3 minutes on high. Let it cool, then peel. The skin should come off easily.
To make the hasselback cuts, cut the butternut pumpkin in half lengthways and place the cut side down on a chopping board. Line one chopstick against each side of the pumpkin, one on each of the long sides, so that when you slice the pumpkin, the chopsticks stop the knife from slicing all the way through. Thinly slice the pumpkin in a perpendicular direction to the chopsticks (the knife should form a cross with the chopstick when you slice down into the pumpkin).
You’ll need to baste the pumpkin with the butter mixture throughout the 50-minute roasting time, maybe around 3 times in total. Basting means using a pastry brush or spoon to apply more of the butter mixture to the pumpkin when the discs start to fan out. This ensures the flavour gets into every part of the pumpkin.
Any protein – pork, lamb, beef, chicken or fish – would pair well with this pumpkin side dish. It is also flavourful enough to be a standalone tapas-style dish, so you can make it if you want to have an at-home wine bar lunch or dinner experience. Or you can serve it with pasta, like in this roasted pumpkin with creamy bacon and herb pasta, as a gorgeous vegetarian main meal that will leave your non-meat-eating friends feeling very well looked after.
Instead of the sage and maple syrup butter, you can be adventurous and try other toppings. Sprinkle some chopped fresh herbs, cheese, crispy bacon, toasted seeds, nuts or dukkah over it. Or top with a dollop of garlic yoghurt.
If you’re after a stunning side dish featuring pumpkin, hasselback is the way to go. For other pumpkin dishes that impress, try smoky roasted pumpkin with beans and chorizo, roasted pumpkin with garlic crumbs and ricotta and teriyaki roasted pumpkin and noodle salad.