Philippa Davis' spiced squash bread is excellent for shoot elevenses. Or keep for surreptitious snacking, smothered in butter

Philippa Davis’ spiced squash bread is as versatile as it is delicious. Eat it at any time of day. Grill for breakfast, smother in butter for snacking or enjoy alongside a comforting bowl of autumnal soup. Or this recipe will make more than enough for shoot elevenses. You can’t go wrong with this guaranteed crowd-pleaser.

For more inspiration on how to spice up your shoot food, try our pheasant, Madeira and kale pie with cheddar and caraway pastry. A useful way to use up your brace, it is a delicious game supper. Or could be used for the shoot lunch.


This is somewhere between a loaf, a bread and a cake. It is suitable for breakfast, lightly grilled, as a snack smothered with butter or it makes the perfect accompaniment to a warming bowl of autumnal soup. Each loaf weighs a pound, and loaves will freeze well.

Makes 2 loaves

  • 1 x onion squash, weighing about 700g
  • 300g light brown sugar
  • 200g butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp grated nutmeg
  • 100g pecans, roughly chopped
  • 4 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 200g bread flour

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4.

Cut the squash in half and roast on a tray for 1 hour or until soft.

Once cool, discard the seeds and skin then mash the flesh with a fork. You will need 400g for this recipe.

In a bowl beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

Gently beat in the eggs and 400g of the squash purée (any leftovers are delicious mixed through soups or stews).

With a spatula, stir through the spices, pecans, 2 tablespoons of pumpkin seeds, the bicarb, baking powder and bread flour. Once well mixed, divide into the two tins and sprinkle with the rest of the pumpkin seeds.

Bake for about 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tin.