Casseroles are a winter staple. So versatile, easy to make, can feed a few or feed a crowd, and best part is you can stick one into the oven and and kind of forget about it for a while. On a cold day having the oven on is always welcome, and timing with these things, well you can keep it in the oven for a little while longer then it needs because the worst thing that will happen is that it will get a little more crispy, and that is only an added bonus because the crispy bits are the best. And what I really love about casseroles is left overs. If you are smart you make it bigger then needed so you have some left over to either eat the next day or freeze for a meal later. Leftover casseroles are the best.
This casserole is a nice, hearty, stick toy your bone with our feeling heavy and gross casserole. Coconut milk and butternut squash give a creaminess, chickpeas for protein and goodness, kale because, and hazelnuts for a nice yummy crunch. All the flavors pair well together and also pair well with many different types of seasonings. I was going to go curry, then I was thinking rosemary, but ended up keeping it simple without any spices which was really nice because the flavors were all rich and clean. But really, you could go a bunch of different ways with this because its a casserole and thats what casserole do.
The stuff. You will need a can of chickpeas, a can of coconut milk (I used light coconut), some kale, an onion, and a butternut squash (you will only need about 3 -ish cups cubed so your squash doesn't need to be as big as mine was). Also need some garlic, raw hazelnuts, olive oil, coconut flour, and salt and pepper
Start by chopping the onion into small pieces and mincing the garlic. Add to a big pot with a little olive oil and get it on a medium heat to start to cook it all down.
While the onions and garlic are cooking, cube the squash. You probably only need the neck, so cut the bottom off (save for later) and peel the skin (also save for later , for soup or stock). Cut the peeled squash into mouth sized cubes.
And by the time you are done with the squash, the onion and garlic have had enough time cooking. Add in the can of coconut milk and the coconut flour. Stir in the flour and bring the pot to a boil, then turn heat down to medium again and let cook for a few minutes until it starts to thicken a bit.
Remove from heat and add in the squash, the chickpeas, and salt and pepper. Mix it all around.
Pour directly into the casserole dish filled with kale and give that all a good mix around.
Level it all out and top with the chopped hazelnuts. Now into the oven it goes.
And hour or so later, you have yourself a casserole ready for for your face.
Grab a bowl and dig on in.
P.S. We realized as we are eating that a really goof vinegary hot sauce or lime juice are perfect addition to this dish. So do that.
Butternut Chickpea Kale Coconut Casserole Topped with Hazelnuts
- 1 can light coconut milk
- 1 can chick peas drained
- 3 ish cups cubed butternut squash
- 1/2 bundle of kale (like 5 big handfuls chopped up)
- 1/2 cup chopped raw hazelnuts
- 1 onion
- 2 tablespoons coconut flour ( can sub regular flour)
- 4-5 cloves garlic
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Either vinegary hot sauce or a lime wedges (optional for serving)
preheat oven to 375
Start by chopping the onion into small pieces and mincing the garlic. Add to a large pot with a tablespoon of olive oil and place on a medium heat to start cooking.
While the onions are going, peel and dice your squash. The easiest way to do this is to cut the neck off and then peel that. (save the peels and the base for soup) Dice the peeled squash into mouth sized cubes and set aside.
Once the onions are lightly cooked, whisk in the canned coconut milk and the coconut flour. Bring mixture to a boil then return to a medium heat. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the milk starts to thicken a bit. Add in the squash, the chick peas, and a teaspoon of salt and pepper. Mix together. Add in the chopped up kale and mix that it then dump it all into 3 quart casserole dish. Level it out and top with the chopped hazelnuts. Place the casserole into the oven and bake for 1 hour ( or a little longer for the crispier crunchy parts.
Once you remove from oven, let sit for 5-10 minutes to set up and then call it ready.
Serve with hot sauce and or lime wedges.
Any left over is great for a meal within then next few days or frozen for a meal down the road