Kabocha Shooters, Candied Pepitas

Kabocha Shooters, Candied Pepitas

Kabocha Shooters
Candied Pepitas, Creme Fraiche, Pink Peppercorns

Is it a drink? Is it a soup? Is it an amuse bouche? Yes. Yes. Yes. Complex in flavor and compact in presentation – these kabocha shooters are excellent for Fall entertaining. Kabocha, a winter squash also known as Japanese pumpkin, has a delectable taste with beautiful flesh the color of turning Autumn leaves.

The soup’s sweet profile includes nutmeg, cardamom, vanilla, and brown sugar while the savory side contains caramelized onion, garlic, ginger, and dry sherry. The roasted squash is blended with the various ingredients and a touch of cream. All this flavor is packed into a little shot glass where a rich cultured cream floats atop and a sticky-candied-crunchy pumpkin seed garnish is perched on the side.

Kabocha Shooters, Candied Pepitas

Kabocha Shooters Recipe

Kabocha Shooters, Candied Pepitas

Roasted Kabocha

Cut a medium-sized kabocha into wedges. Scoop out the seeds. Roast on a lined baking sheet at 375°F for approximately 30-35 minutes, flipping half-way through, until the flesh is tender. Remove from oven and let cool. Peel off skin. Break into smaller chunks before blending.

Kabocha Shooters, Candied Pepitas

Candied Pepitas

  • 1/2 c. roasted & salted pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds)
  • 2 T. granulated sugar

Melt sugar in a small heavy-bottomed skillet or cast iron pan. When the sugar begins to turn golden in color, remove the pan from the heat and use a heat-proof rubber spatula to stir in the roasted & salted pepitas. Remove pepitas to a piece of parchment to cool. Break into bite sized pieces.

Kabocha Soup

  • roasted kabocha
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 1/2 t. garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 t. ginger, grated
  • 2 T. fino sherry
  • 2 c. chicken broth
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar (lightly-packed)
  • 1 t. vanilla extract (high-quality)
  • 1/8 t. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 t. ground cardamom
  • salt
  • 1/2 c. half and half
  • creme fraiche
  • pink peppercorns

Melt butter in a sauté pan. Add onion and cook over medium heat until caramelized. Stir in garlic and ginger, cook one minute. Add sherry and cook until alcohol evaporates. Add chicken broth, bring to a boil, then simmer 5 minutes. Let cool slightly (to about 170°F).

Place roasted kabocha chunks in a high-performance blender. Carefully pour in broth mixture. Add brown sugar, vanilla, nutmeg, cardamom. Start blender* slowly, gradually increasing speed for about 40 seconds or until the soup is completely smooth. Turn off blender. Add salt to taste, add half and half then blend briefly to combine. Add water if mixture is too thick.

*Always take care when blending hot liquids. Vitamix has a special lid that vents the steam pressure.

Kabocha Shooters

To Compose Kabocha Shooters

  • kabocha soup
  • creme fraiche
  • pink peppercorns
  • candied pepitas

Grind whole pink peppercorns with a mortal and pestle.

Pour warm soup into shot glasses. Top with a dollop of creme fraiche. The warm soup will melt the cream into a smooth top layer. Add a petite sprinkle of pink peppercorns on top of the cream. Perch a piece of candied pepitas on the edge of the glass.

Kabocha Shooters: Candied Pepitas, Creme Fraiche, Pink Peppercorns

Happy Fall Entertaining!

More Shooters

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Fun Little Baked Potato Shooters with Bacon, Mexican Crema, Cheese, and Chives

More Amuse Bouche

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Scallop Amuse Bouche with Miso Aioli, Shiso, Carrot Cucumber Slaw

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