long live the reign of winter squash

Winter squash is harvested in September and October, and as a grocery store patron who supports seasonal cooking, I’ve done my part by stocking up on several crazy-shaped varieties. I know, I know–winter squash is rather starchy for a vegetable and ideally would be eaten after a workout. But I say kabash to that theory, at least for the fall, and am instead adopting the idea of moderation.

So apart from my recent adventures cooking savory butternut squash casserolepumpkin martini, pumpkin bouillabaisse, pumpkin crisp and pumpkin souffle, here’s another winter squash recipe to file away for fall. And lucky for me, I’ve got an acorn squash begging for butchery.

Twice-Baked Butternut Squash

Ingredients

  • 1 large butternut squash
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp parmesan (optional)
  • 2 tbsp pesto
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • a few churns of ground pepper
  • 1 cup of grape tomatoes

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees, then cut squash lengthwise and scoop out seedy pulp.

2. Sprinkle halves with salt and pepper, and place face down in pan with 1/4 inch of water. Bake for 40-45 minutes.

3. Once squash is cooked, scoop out flesh (leaving 1/4 inch) and place in medium mixing bowl.

4. Add butter, salt, parmesan, garlic powder and pesto to mixing bowl and blend.

5. Dice grape tomatoes, then stir into filling with large spoon.

6. Stuff squash casings with mixture, and top with sliced almonds.

7. Bake for 20 more minutes.

As I was preparing the squash, James prepared our meat. In a large sauté pan, he combined lean ground beef, spicy sausage, liquid smoke, garlic powder, diced tomatoes, onion powder, red pepper, cumin, chili powder, basil, oregano, paprika and black pepper to come up with a quite tasty protein dish. He’s not big on measuring, so I’m guessing he simply used a dash of this and a dash of that.

Together, the dishes were a true testament to teamwork.

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