food recipes

From pasta pies to caramel bars: Yotam Ottolenghi’s pumpkin recipes | Food

It’s a week past Halloween and nearly three until Thanksgiving, which means it’s pumpkin time! Cinderella may not be pulling up in a carriage at either celebration this year, but don’t let that stop you having a ball. There are so many varieties to get to know. Kabocha, with its creamy, nutty flesh, is my current favourite, but I also have a soft spot for the small, dark orange potimarron, which has a rich, roast chestnut flavour. The main difference between pumpkin and squash is the texture of the flesh, with pumpkin tending to be more fibrous. So long as you avoid those large, watery Halloween pumpkins, however, they can essentially be used interchangeably.

Harissa roast pumpkin with tahini sauce (above)

This is a great side for roast chicken, but it would also work very well stuffed into wraps or sandwiches.

Prep 6 min
Cook 40 min
Serves 4 as a side

1 small pumpkin (or 1 large butternut squash), skin left on, deseeded and cut into 2½-3cm squares (900g net weight)
50g rose harissa
1 garlic clove
, peeled and crushed
3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to serve
Salt and black pepper
60g tahini
2 tbsp soy sauce
1½ tbsp lime juice
2 tsp maple syrup
1 tbsp coriander leaves
, finely sliced
2 spring onions, trimmed and finely sliced

Heat the oven to its highest setting – 240C (220C fan)/475F/gas 9. In a large bowl, toss the first four ingredients with three-quarters of a teaspoon of salt and a generous grind of pepper. Transfer the mix to a large tray lined with greaseproof paper, spreading it out as much as possible, cover tightly with foil and roast for 15 minutes.

Remove the foil, turn down the heat to 220C (200C fan)/425F/gas 7 and roast uncovered for another 25 minutes, stirring once halfway, until the pumpkin is cooked through and nicely browned.

In a small bowl, whisk the tahini, soy sauce, lime juice and maple syrup, until very smooth – depending on the thickness of the tahini, you may need to add up to a tablespoon of water to get it to the right consistency.

Transfer the pumpkin to a platter, drizzle over the tahini sauce, finish with the coriander, spring onion and a drizzle of oil, and serve.

Pumpkin pappardelle pie

Yotam Ottolenghi’s pumpkin pappardelle pie



Yotam Ottolenghi’s pumpkin pappardelle pie.

Kabocha is the ideal choice here, but butternut squash will work just as well. This is a rich pie, best eaten after a suitably hearty walk.

Prep 6 min
Cook 2½ hr
Serves 4

150g unsalted butter, softened
100g white miso paste
1 litre warm water
1 kabocha pumpkin
, skin-on, deseeded and cut into roughly 6cm triangles (1.3kg net weight)
300ml whole milk
80g parmesan
, cut into chunks
Salt and black pepper
350g dried pappardelle nests
60ml olive oil
2 tbsp double cream
2 tbsp parsley leaves
, finely chopped

For the tomato salsa
4 very ripe tomatoes, finely chopped (350g net weight)
2 small garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
60ml olive oil
1 tbsp fresh oregano leaves
, finely chopped

Heat the oven to its highest setting 240C (220C fan)/475F/gas 9. In a large, high-sided baking tray, whisk 100g of the butter with the miso and water, then lay in the pumpkin pieces and cover with foil. Bake for 35 minutes, remove the foil, then bake for another 30 minutes, until the pumpkin is completely soft, and remove.

Turn down the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6. When the pumpkin is cool enough to handle, remove the skin and put all the flesh and the reduced miso butter liquid from the tray in a blender with the milk, parmesan, half a teaspoon of salt, plenty of pepper and the remaining 50g butter, and blitz on high speed until completely smooth.

Grease and line a 23cm spring-form cake tin, then arrange the pappardelle nests inside it. Pour the pumpkin sauce over the top, and tap the tin on a work surface to level out the surface and ensure the pasta is completely covered in the sauce (you shouldn’t have any dry areas of pasta visible). Cover the tin with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove the foil, drizzle three tablespoons of oil over the top and bake for 20 minutes more, rotating the tin once halfway, until the pasta is crisp on top and cooked all the way through. Leave to cool for 20 minutes before releasing the pie from its tin.

While the pie is baking, mix all the ingredients for the tomato salsa with a quarter-teaspoon of salt.

Drizzle the cream and remaining tablespoon of oil over the top of the pasta pie, sprinkle over the parsley and serve with the tomato salsa alongside.

Salted pumpkin caramel bars

Yotam Ottolenghi’s salted pumpkin caramel bars



Yotam Ottolenghi’s salted pumpkin caramel bars.

This is millionaire’s shortbread, Thanksgiving-style, taking the natural sweetness of pumpkin, dialling it right up and somehow getting away with it.

Prep 10 min
Cook 30 min
Set 1 hr 5 min
Makes 24 bars

For the speculoos biscuit base
180g speculoos biscuits – I like Lotus Biscoff
1½ tbsp plain flour
⅛ tsp salt
60g unsalted butter
, melted

For the pumpkin caramel
125g whipping cream
80g pumpkin puree
(or mashed pumpkin or sweet potato)
1 tsp ground ginger
150g caster sugar
60g golden syrup
30g butter
, cut into 1cm cubes
½ tsp cider vinegar
1 tsp flaked sea salt

For the toasted pumpkin seed salt
1 tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted
⅛ tsp flaked sea salt
100g 85{c33c21346ff5e26ab8e0ae3d29ae4367143f0d27c235e34c392ea37decdb8bed}-cocoa dark chocolate
, melted

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6. Line the base and sides of a 4cm high 20cm x 20cm square tin with greaseproof paper – you’ll use the paper to help lift the biscuit mix from the tin once set, so you want to create a sort of sling that hangs over the sides.

Put the biscuits, flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor and blitz to fine crumbs. Add the melted butter, pulse until just combined, then tip out all over the base of the lined tin, and press down with the back of a spoon to flatten and compress the mix. Bake for eight to 10 minutes, then remove and leave to cool while you make the caramel.

Whisk the cream, pumpkin puree and ginger in a small saucepan, then set the pan over a low heat to warm gently.

In a medium saucepan, mix the sugar, syrup and two tablespoons of water and set over a medium-high heat. Once the syrup mix comes to a boil, swirl the pan gently (do not stir it), then turn down the heat to medium and cook for five minutes, until the mix is just starting to caramelise. Stir in the warmed cream and pumpkin mixture, and cook, stirring every now and then to stop it catching, for nine or 10 minutes more, until thickened and darkened in colour. Turn off the heat, whisk in the butter, vinegar and salt, then pour all over the now cooled and set biscuit base in the tin. Use a spatula to smooth out the caramel and get it into the corners, then refrigerate for about an hour, until set.

Roughly bash the pumpkin seeds and salt in a mortar. Carefully lift out the set mix from the tin, using the sides of the paper to help you, and transfer to a tray. Spread evenly with the melted chocolate, sprinkle over the pumpkin seed salt and leave to set for about five minutes. Cut into 24 bars and store in a sealed container in the fridge until ready to serve.