There is a particular kind of stress that comes with being a student - guilty stress. There is constantly the feeling that you should be working. Weekends are reserved for spending eight hours in the same cafe and then trudging home through the first snow of the year just to set up at your desk with a cup of tea and start all over again.
Winter has come and with it a positive avalanche of final assignments and exam prep. It is half exciting and half totally physically and mentally draining. I am sitting here writing this at 12:30am after working an 8 hour shift and looking forward to a biology quiz tomorrow afternoon (on this super interesting crazy cool video). I totally recognize that I have it easy, too. I am super privileged in countless ways (including being in university at all), so this isn't so much a complaint as it is a reflection of the different ways in which we push ourselves and the different kinds of stress we face.
Montreal is looking like a perfect holiday card and this colder weather is bringing out the baker in me (or is it just late night stress baking?). I know this recipe isn't exactly baking, but it is definitely the beginning of a few cozier recipes I have coming your way. I was talking with a friend after work today and we both agreed that this colder weather makes us want to hibernate in our apartments and just do nice things for our bodies and minds. Lots of baths, cups of tea, reading, drawing, cookies (!!!), TV, face masks, blankets... I think I could go on forever!
This savoury Butternut Squash & Beet Crumble w/ Sage Leaves is such a winner. It came to me so suddenly and clearly while out for a walk last week, and I knew that I couldn't wait to share it. There is something meditative about peeling and cubing the vegetables, picking the sage leaves off the stem, and squishing the moist crumble topping between my fingers. It is repetitive and soothing. I've been listening to Blonde on repeat and creating my own food and art projects inside my warm bright home.
The earthiness of the sage leaves and beets pairs perfectly with the bright sweetness of the squash. I love the way the beets half dye the orangey-yellow squash so that the baked crumble looks like a sunset inside. I know that American Thanksgiving is coming up and I think this would be the perfect vegan centrepiece. Make this for friends, family, or just yourself. Hugs! xo
PS. Sorry for the photo heavy post, I couldn't choose!
savoury butternut squash & beet crumble w/ sage leaves
If you can't find sage leaves I think that thyme would work really well here too. For gluten free options, use gluten free certified oats and your favourite gluten free flour blend (I also think using chickpea or brown rice flour would work well).
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup spelt flour
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp miso (optional but delicious)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- pinch of pepper
- 1/4 cup olive oil (plus more for drizzling)
- 3 cups cubed butternut squash (about half a large butternut squash)
- 1 cup cubed beets (about 2 - 3 beets)
- 4 sprigs sage, stemmed and roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- salt and pepper to taste (pinch of each)
Preheat the oven to 375.
Make the crumble topping by combining all of the ingredients in a bowl and mixing until crumbly and moist. I used my hands to fully incorporate the olive oil, squishing the mixture between my fingers.
Toss the cubed butternut squash, beets, sage, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl and then transfer to a 6 x 10 (or equivalent) baking pan. Top with the crumble and drizzle a small amount of olive oil over the top of the crumble.
Bake for 40 - 45 minutes, until the topping is golden brown and the squash is soft. Check it at around the 30 minute mark and place a small piece of tinfoil over the top if it is browning too quickly, to prevent burning. Serve warm!