All About Butternut Squash

Butternut Squash

Sure you can get butternut squash in the supermarket in any season, but as the leaves change color and the weather cools down, Fall is well underway and it’s time for one of our favorite ingredients, butternut squash! These are one of the most versatile- EASY- ingredients to have in the kitchen and the colder weather is the perfect time to experiment.

When you buy a fresh squash (butternut, acorn, sugar squash), the main thing is to be sure it feels heavy in your hand. We like to use big squash so it’s easier to handle the flesh. Once you get it home, it’s time to start roasting. Preheat the oven to 425F. Carefully split the squash in half (it will require some force, so be careful!) and scoop out the seeds. The seeds can be dried and roasted like pumpkin seeds, but, hey, really? You aren’t going to do that. Out they go! Season the squash halves with butter or oil, salt, and pepper and place face up on a pan. Place the pan on the middle rack in the oven and leave it for 45-60 minutes…you’ll know they’re done when a knife slides easily into the flesh.

Once they’re done, let them cool and then scoop the flesh out of the skin. Once you have your roasted squash, season and serve, or if you can stand to wait for a few more minutes, blend the pieces with chicken stock and heavy cream and make a delicious soup, which can be garnished with dried cranberries and bacon bits (see butternut squash soup recipe)

Another way to prepare the roasted squash is to mash along with some potato- squash-flavored mashed potatoes…a great addition to Thanksgiving dinner!