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Squash and Tomato Crumble

October 25, 2010

Vegetable Crumble

A few weeks ago, Matt of MattBites.com shared a simple little recipe that completely blew my mind, for these lovely vegetable crumbles. Vegetable crumbles! The name is so plain, and his single paragraph describing them is so quiet and unassuming. Oh, just vegetable crumbles. You know, simple. What?! No, to me this idea was almost revolutionary. I love, love, love it when a new culinary idea quietly appears in the course of my normal, daily reading, and this one refused to be shaken easily. Yes, a savory crumble. I had to try it.

It might seem a little odd. I had a few doubts, myself: How do you get the excellent crumble texture without all that glorious caramelizable sugar? Isn’t this just, well, flour sprinkled over some vegetables? Is this going to be weird? I ignored my doubts, though, and forged ahead because if this was good, I was sure it was going to be so good I would want it all the time. And it was.

The crumble topping is almost like a deconstructed pie dough. It’s buttery, and somewhere between flaky and crunchy. It adds texture to the soft, warm squash and tart, juicy roasted tomatoes tucked underneath. The flavors together, well, they made me swoon. I even sent a text to Mr. X to sing the praises of my dinner, and I’ve promised to make it again when he comes to visit next week (which in itself is making me swoon all over again). This is one of those kitchen ideas that makes you stop, stunned, and wonder why you’ve never done this before, because that is a lot of wasted dinners spent not eating this.

Vegetable Crumble

I am just hoping that it is equally good without the tomatoes, now that the season for them is pretty much over. I suspect it will be.

Squash and Tomato Crumble

  • 1 small acorn squash
  • 1 leek
  • 1 patty pan squash or other summer squash (if you have any leftover)
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • about 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • about 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • about 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon dried or fresh thyme
  • 2-3 tablespoons butter
  • about 1/2 tablespoon cold water
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese (I like Dubliner or farmhouse style cheese)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the acorn squash in half and scrape out the seeds. Place the squash, cut side up, into a medium baking dish, and add about a cup of water to the dish. Roast the squash until just soft, about 20 minutes, then remove and let cool.

Trim the leek, and slice in half, then cut into 1/2 inch slices. Rinse thoroughly to get rid of any silt and sand. Chop the patty pan squash and the tomato into roughly one-inch pieces. Peel the roasted acorn squash, and cut into one-inch pieces. Toss the squash, tomatoes, and leeks together in a large bowl with the olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Spread the squash mixture into an even layer in a cast iron skillet or baking dish.

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, bread crumbs, and dried thyme, along with another pinch of salt and pepper. Cut the butter into smaller pieces, and use your fingers or a dough blender to cut the butter into the flour, until it has the texture of gravel. Add the water and keep mixing until it just barely comes together. Sprinkle the flour mixture over the top of the squash in the skillet.

Bake the crumble for about 40 minutes at 400 degrees, or until the topping is barely brownedp. Then sprinkle the cheese over the top and bake for another 5 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes before serving.

IMG_5358

This is a terrific vegetarian main course for dinner (at least, it was for me), but I think it would also be pretty darn awesome as a Thanksgiving side dish. Just in case, you know, you’re planning ahead. You might be able to substitute whole canned tomatoes, drained, for the fresh tomatoes, as well. And I suspect parsnips, carrots, turnips, and potatoes would be right at home in this skillet of awesomeness.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Lynn Biasini permalink
    October 25, 2010 12:58 pm

    Kale would also be yummy in this for autumn?? Hell, ANYTHING would be yummy in this!!!!!!

  2. October 25, 2010 3:05 pm

    I think you are right! I want to try a version with butternut squash and apples, and I think kale would be great with that combination.

  3. October 26, 2010 5:46 am

    I’m with you! How many wasted dinners without this as an option! I Love this idea and can’t wait to try it! THanks for sharing!!!

  4. November 13, 2010 8:05 pm

    This is yummy! Squash and Tomato Crumble for lunch! This adds to my to-learn recipes for the weekend!!
    Keep it up~!

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