Acorn Squash with Coconut Custard


Every year at Thanksgiving, Top Chef winner Kristen Kish’s mother would serve roasted acorn squash. When Kish took over cooking the holiday meal, she upgraded the classic side with a decadent coconut custard that offsets the earthy sweetness of the dish. The custard will set as it cools and slices beautifully at room temperature.

Active Time:
10 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 15 mins


  • 2 acorn squash, halved lengthwise, seeds removed

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 6 fresh sage leaves, torn into small pieces

  • 1 cup well-shaken and stirred canned coconut milk

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 4 large egg yolks

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest

  • 1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel

  • 3 tablespoons brown butter

  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Cut a small slice off skin side of each squash half so they will sit flat while baking. Transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet.

  2. Drizzle squash with oil, and season with kosher salt; sprinkle evenly with sage. Roast until squash is tender and begins to brown, about 40 minutes. Let squash cool completely, about 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.

  3. Whisk together coconut milk, cream, egg yolks, sugar, pepper, orange zest, and fleur de sel in a large bowl until well combined. Pour coconut mixture evenly into well of each squash. Bake at 300°F until custard begins to set and jiggles slightly like gelatin, about 55 minutes. Let cool to room temperature, at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours. (As squash cools, custard will set up further.) Cut squash halves in half; transfer to a platter. Drizzle brown butter over top, and sprinkle with toasted walnuts.

    Acorn Squash with Coconut Custard
    Eva Kolenko
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