Virtual Vegan Potluck – Roasted Kabocha and Beets with Hijiki and Sesame Orange Dressing

posted in: Recipes, vegetable | 38

Welcome to the Virtual Vegan Potluck!!

I wasn’t really focusing on a dish with seasonal flair, but this one definitely has it. Lovely deep orange and beet red with a festive orange dressing and the addition of hijiki. This dish shines on any holiday table. It’s absolutely gorgeous and has a perfect balance of flavors. Cooking the hijiki in a little apple juice tempers the flavor so even seaweed shy guests may be surprised by how much they like it.


My potluck offering had several variations in my head, but the first real life trial tasted so yummy, I am going to leave it like it is. I have added some ideas for variations in notes below the recipe. If your beet greens look fresh and vibrant, you can substitute them for the daikon greens in this recipe.

If you are just joining us, please head on over to Vegan Bloggers Unite for the start point of the potluck and the list of all participants. You will have a glorious time perusing appetizers through desserts. This potluck lasts for days, there are so many delicious dishes to sample. Take your time or gorge all at once. It’s up to you. The links from blog to blog will stay up indefinitely.


Kabocha and Beets with Hijiki and Sesame Orange Dressing

2 Tbsp dried hijiki or arame, soak in water to cover for 10 minutes then drain
1/2 cup good quality unsweetened apple juice
1/4 cup water
5 cups cubed kabocha or red kuri squash (approx 1 1/2 ” pieces) leave skin on, but cut hard gnarly bits off
about 4 medium beets, washed and cut rough bits off, cut into 3/4″ cubes (about 3 cups)
unrefined olive oil
sea salt


2 tsp brown rice syrup (Suzanne’s is a favorite)
2 tsp untoasted sesame oil
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 1 large orange)
1/2 to 1 tsp fresh orange zest, be careful to only get the top layer of orange
1 tsp unpasteurized shoyu or gluten-free tamari

1.  Oven to 350°.

2.  Place the hijiki or arame, apple juice and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer until all the liquid has been dissolved, but hijiki/arame is still moist. Remove from heat.

3.  Make the dressing so that it’s ready when the squash and beets come out of the oven. In a small bowl stir together the rice syrup and both oils. Whisk in the orange juice, zest and shoyu. Set aside.

4.  Place squash in a medium mixing bowl. Add a pinch of sea salt and enough oil to cover the squash lightly with a little sheen, but not so much that it’s swimming. Mix well. Place in a single layer on a shallow baking dish or cookie sheet. Stir every 10 minutes or so while baking. Bake until tender. When done, remove from oven and immediately pour the squash into a bowl, mix with half of the dressing and cover with a plate to keep the steam in.

5.  Repeat step 4, using the beets. Roast on a separate cookie sheet and place in a separate bowl.

5.  When ready to serve, drain the beets so the extra beet colored liquid doesn’t permeate the whole dish. Add hijiki/arame to the squash and mix gently. Then fold in the beets, trying to keep the beets from coloring the squash. Transfer to a serving plate.

6.  Enjoy! The flavors are even better the next day.

I haven’t tried these variations, but here are some ideas of additions to this dish:  pomegranate seeds, toasted pecans, orange slices.

To return to the previous side dish at Roshni’s Kitchen, click on the Go Back button.

To move forward to the next side dish at Astig Vegan, click on the Go Forward button.

You can also start at the very beginning.

Please take a moment to thank lovely Annie of An Unrefined Vegan for her vision as the originator of this grand party! Thanks also go to Lidia of Air Eater and Vegan Bloggers Unite, Angela at Canned Time, Somer at Vedged Out, Jason of Jason and the Veganauts and many others who have contributed their time and efforts to this event.

Thank you for joining us!! I hope you are having fun.

Love, Teresa




38 Responses

  1. Annie

    Cannot beat roasted veggies for goodness – especially with a tangy/sweet dressing! Beautiful.

    Thanks so much for bringing something to the Potluck!

    • sweetveg

      Thank you, Annie! I love participating.

  2. Allison (Spontaneous Tomato)

    Yum, what a good idea to pair beets with kabocha—they both taste so good roasted! I love love love anything involving kabocha, and I am a big fan of hijiki salads, too. (I’m sure it’d be amazing with pomegranate seeds, too, like you said!)

    • sweetveg

      I am really pleased wih how this recipe turned out. Let me know if you try it. 🙂

  3. Kelli

    Hmmm…. this looks so good, I wonder if it could get me to like seaweed? 🙂

    • sweetveg

      It’s quite possible. You could try it with the arame. I think it has a lighter quality.

  4. Cat

    I’ve recently fallen in love with kabocha squash. I will definitely be making this; it looks deeeeeelish!

    • sweetveg

      I’m so glad you discovered kabocha!! Have you tried red kuri? It’s yummy, too.

  5. Somer

    I love how brown and caramelized all the vegetables get! I adore this dish!

  6. gigiveganville

    I am a total seaweed lover, so this right up my alley. The pomegranate variation sounds like a complete winner too.

    • sweetveg

      Yay! Another seaweed lover! Have you tried sea palm? It’s very interesting. 🙂 I have a recipe for it in the recipe index.

    • sweetveg

      This might be a good intro to sea vegetables. It has just enough to add some interest and nutrition to the dish, but I don’t think it’s overpowering at all. If you do buy sea veg, make sure it’s from a reputable source. I usually get organic. My macrobiotic resources page has some sources.

  7. Bex @

    Ooooh, some new ingredients in here that I haven’t tried before! I will go in search of them. Thank you for the inspiration. 🙂

    • sweetveg

      You’re welcome! I hope you are enjoying the potluck!

  8. Yinka

    This is particularly exciting to me because I never cook with either hijiki OR kabocha… oh, but I sure will, now. Gorgeous! Thanks so much.

    • sweetveg

      Yay! I am so glad you are inspired. I would love to hear how it goes!

  9. angela

    Oh, what a tasty side dish for a Fall meal! I can literally taste this right now. Kabocha is by far my favourite squash. 🙂

    • sweetveg

      Me, too!! Thank you! I had a vision of the orange kabocha and red beets together and I wasn’t disappointed! And the kabocha turns out rich and moist when you add the dressing when it’s still hot and put the lid on. Heaven.

    • sweetveg

      I’m glad you think so. Thank you!

  10. Kristen @ The Vegan Weirdos Next Door

    You really can’t beat roasted beets. Sorry for the unintentional and cheesy pun. But seriously, I love beets any way I can get them, but especially roasted with other veggies. One of my favorite combos is beets, sweet potatoes, and brussels sprouts. I have never tried squash but now I sure will! I typically do a roasted veg plate for Thanksgiving so I guess I’ll have to pick up a kabocha and throw some in!

    • sweetveg

      Great! I think you’re going to love it! 🙂

  11. Alina

    Hey girl, just wanted to let you know that I included your recipe in the list of my favorites from this VVP! The post is here, if you want to see it:

    Thank you for your recipe!
    -Alina from Vegan Runner Eats

    • sweetveg

      You’re welcome! Thank you for letting me know.

    • sweetveg

      You’re welcome! I had a great time at the potluck! I hope you enjoyed yourself, also.

  12. Susmitha - Veganosaurus

    Those roasted veggies look so yum! Thanks for the tip about cooking hijiki in apple sauce first. I’m a bit seaweed shy, I’ll definitely try this next time I cook with some. 🙂

    • sweetveg

      I hope you like it. Seaweed is so good for you. It would be great if you can find a few ways to enjoy it!

    • sweetveg

      It’s really yummy. The orange flavor gets stronger over time due to the orange zest. 🙂