Roasted Cauliflower with Butternut Squash and Pepita Macha

Julia Sullivan

Henrietta Red, Nashville

This recipe is featured in the Nashville Food Waste Initiative and James Beard Foundation Waste Not Cooking Demo, in partnership with Mayor Cooper’s Food Saver Challenge, with the Butternut Squash Salad and Tennessee Whiskey Sour.


Butternut Squash Purée

  • 1/2 lb. Butternut Squash, ideally the other half of your salad squash, cut crosswise, seeds removed, and skin left intact
  • 2 cloves Garlic, roughly chopped and toasted
  • 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Lemon, zested and juiced
  • Salt, to taste

Pepita Macha

  • 1 oz Dried Chipotle Chilis, stem and seeds removed
  • 10 oz Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Garlic cloves
  • 1/3 cup Butternut squash seeds, toasted, set aside
  • 2 tbsp for garnish
  • 1 tbsp Sesame seeds
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 tbsp Brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Champagne Vinegar


  • 1 lb. Cauliflower, quartered, stems and leaves removed
  • 2 Garlic cloves, grated or finely chopped
  • 2 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 2 oz Canola oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Butternut squash seeds, to garnish
  • 1 Lime, zest and juice


For the squash purée, heat oven to 350°F. Score squash crosswise and season with EVOO, salt, and pepper. Place on a lined sheet pan or roasting rack and bake for about 35 minutes, or until golden brown and soft throughout.

Scoop the flesh of the squash into the bowl of a food processor. Add toasted garlic, EVOO, salt, lemon juice and lemon zest. Blend until smooth. Adjust seasoning to taste.

For the pepita macha, heat a medium sauté pan over medium heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot but not smoking, add garlic cloves. Fry while stirring for about one minute, until they begin to brown. Add the chilis, pepitas, and sesame seeds, continue browning for about two minutes more. Remove from heat. Carefully transfer the contents to the jar of the blender/food processor and allow to cool or about 10 minutes.

Add the salt, sugar, and vinegar. Process until smooth, starting on low and building up to a high speed. Pour into a container and allow to cool before using.

For the cauliflower, heat oven to 350°F Combine oil, garlic, and smoked paprika. Season cauliflower quarters evenly with oil mixture, salt, and pepper. Place on a lined sheet tray and roast until golden brown and tender throughout (about 20-25 minutes).

Serve cauliflower over butternut squash puree with pepita macha, toasted pepitas, and baby mustard greens. Season with lime juice, lime zest, and salt to taste.


2 servings