1 small to medium-sized Kobacha squash*
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to your taste)
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon sea salt or coarse salt
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
Walnut oil to drizzle over the squash slices
Raw sugar to sprinkle over the squash slices
* Kabocha is the generic Japanese word for squash, but refers most commonly to a squash of the buttercup type. This squash has a green, bluish-gray or a deep orange skin. The flesh is deep yellow. Kobocha Squash may be cooked whole or split lengthwise (removing seeds). It has a rich sweet flavor, and often dry and flaky when cooked. Use in any dish in which buttercup squash would work. Photo from Melissa's Produce.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a silicon baking liner or parchment paper.
Using a sharp knife on a stable surface, split open the squash; remove all seeds and either discard or toast in the oven. Learn How to Toast Squash and Pumpkin Seeds. Cut the squash halves into 1/4-inch thick slices.
In a large re-sealable plastic bag, place the squash slices. Add brown sugar, cayenne pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, cumin, and salt. Shake until all the squash slices are well coated. Add the soy sauce and shake again.
Spread the coated squash slices in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with the walnut oil and sprinkle the raw sugar over the top.
Place the baking sheet with the prepared squash layers in the oven for 15 minutes. Turn the squash slices over and drizzle with a little more walnut and and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake an additional 15 minutes. Because oven temperature can differ, keep an eye on the squash.
Remove from oven and serve hot.
Makes 4 to 5 servings as a side dish.