Two weeks ago I got a terrible head cold that at first made my throat feel like a solid piece of rock and then morphed into congestion and then just left me aching. When I finally got a solid night of sleep (like a really solid night of sleep--12 hours, or more), I felt like I could think again. Smelling, tasting, and swallowing were still a day away.
The worst part of a head cold to me is that your body feels totally fine--like you could run a mile- but the minute you try to do anything, you realize it was a terrible, terrible idea. By Friday I felt well enough to hit the climbing gym again, and doing so plastered a fixed smile across my face. I could taste again too, so when I got home I cooked the pumpkin I hadn't found energy to cook earlier in the week. Golden pumpkin with savory Merkén Chile: it was the first thing I smelled all week.
That pumpkin filled my house with the scent of it's caramelizing edges and steaming Merkén chile. They were beautiful, but that smell was what really swept me off my feet. A drizzle of honey was all that was missing. (Doesn't honey make everything better?)
If you can't find Merkén chile don't sweat it: you can use any kind of smoked red chile flake in this recipe.
Serves: 4 | Total Time: 50 minutes
- 1 small pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons merkén chile, or other smoked red chile flake
- 1-2 tablespoons honey
- Garnish: 2 tablespoons minced cilantro
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Slice pumpkin half, remove stem, and seeds. Slice into wedges, about 1-inch thick.
- Fit a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place pumpkins on pan, and brush with avocado oil. Sprinkle with garlic powder, salt, and merkén. Place in oven, and bake for 30-40 minutes, until pumpkin is tender all the way through, and starting to brown on the edges.
- Remove from oven, and drizzle lightly with honey. Garnish with minced cilantro.