‘Tis the season of pumpkins. This beautiful burnt orange gourd-like squash is out and about in L.A. from Jack o’ lanterns to homemade pumpkin pie. The beauty of this vegetable is its versatile nature. From savory to sweet, local chefs are cooking up a storm this season, putting unique twists on pumpkin dishes that you’ve never tasted before.
The Griddle Cafe
7916 Sunset Blvd.
Hollywood, CA 90046
Breakfast any time of the day is always welcome at The Griddle Cafe. Known for its delicious and inventive pancake creations, The Griddle Cafe’s ‘Tis The Season pancakes makes it a holiday all year long. Mixed with the restaurant’s secret pumpkin pie filling, this pancake’s old-fashioned original batter recipe is cooked on the griddle and served with real whipped cream and dusted with powdered sugar. Choose sides such as egg whites, grilled sliced turkey or gourmet sausage. Be sure to order a Griddle Cafe breakfast blend coffee, which is micro-roasted and served in a French press.
333 S. Alameda St., 310
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Shojin in Little Tokyo is an inspiring vegan Japanese restaurant. The green vegetable roll is filled with pumpkin tempura and a curry spice tempeh that is just so savory and exotic. The fusion of flavors tempts taste buds into wanting more. The pumpkin croquettes are offered as an appetizer but certainly may be ordered for an entree. The crunchy pumpkin and tofu croquette is topped off with a shojin tomato sauce bursting with zest.
Auntie Em’s Kitchen
4616 Eagle Rock Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90041
At the heart of seasonal cooking, Chef De Cuisine and owner Theresa Wahl and Executive Chef Donna Coppola of Auntie Em’s Kitchen are preparing special comfort foods perfect for the fall season. Not short on pumpkin-based dishes, the Auntie Em menu features pumpkin kibbeh, vegetable curry with pumpkin, pumpkin chipotle soup and a roasted pumpkin, zucchini peppita and goat cheese salad. Guests will also warm up with a variety of freshly made soups including beet and ginger, roasted chicken, turkey and rice, earthy mushroom, and butternut squash and garlic. Save room for dessert; Pastry Chef Amanda Haas has schemed up a seasonal pumpkin spice cupcake with cinnamon cream cheese frosting.
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346 S. La Brea
Los Angeles, CA 90036
For the best pumpkin raviolis in town, visit Ca’Brea. This authentic Northern Italian restaurant has been serving ravioli alla zucca con salsa alle noci since 1990. The rustic dish features homemade raviolis that are stuffed with the fall favorite ingredient seasoned perfectly to melt in your mouth. Raviolis are served with a fior of cream and toasted walnut sauce.
CAFE del REY
4451 Admiralty Way
Marina del Rey, CA 90292
CAFE del REY, the popular seaside cafe located directly along the Marina del Rey docks in the harbor neighborhood, is offering a savory kobocha squash bisque with spiced pumpkin seeds, diced apples and chili oil. Executive Chef Daniel Roberts’ seasonal bisque uses kabocha, a green winter squash commonly called Japanese pumpkin. CAFE del REY’s Mediterranean-inspired cuisine is distinct and an excellent representation of Southern California still perfect for fall this year.
Sheryl Craig is a writer with a passion for interesting finds and treasures in Los Angeles. She has a background in journalism and public relations. A mother of two daughters, Sheryl integrates her healthy lifestyle into raising her children. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.