I have a love-hate relationship with butternut squash. I love the way it tastes…sweet and smooth with just a hint of veggie flavor. I love it when it is mixed up with other things, like honey and herbs and shallots, especially when I get that whole sweet and salty thing going on. I love it when someone else makes it for me.
And that is because I do NOT love the peeling cutting up of it that is part of so many butternut recipes, because butternut squash is hard as a rock. And I do not love the paying of approximately one million dollars for buying already cut-up butternut squash in the supermarket.
Which is why I madly love this particular butternut recipe. No peeling, and the only cutting is to cut the ends off, cut it in half, and scoop out the seeds. If you can’t recruit your manly Southern husband to do this, you can actually do it yourself in about 5 minutes. Or less. Then it’s just a matter of putting butter and honey and herbs and shallots on top of your butternut halves…
…and then baking it all up in the oven until it is soft and cooperative. Let it cool a little, scoop out the lovely soft butternut with the cooked shallot and herbs and give it a quick whirl in your food processor with the teeniest amount of cream. And that’s it…easy, breezy, scrumptious butternut without all the angst. I have enough angst in my life what with all the goings on at Downton Abbey at the moment. Happy butternut!
- * 3 butternut squash (2 pounds each)
- * 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
- * ½ teaspoon black pepper
- * 6 small shallots, halved
- * 4 tablespoons honey
- * 6 sprigs fresh thyme
- * 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- * 6 tablespoons heavy cream
- Heat oven to 400° F. Trim the ends from the squash, then halve lengthwise, discarding the seeds. Transfer the squash, cut-side up, to a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment or foil. Season with the salt and pepper and top with the shallots, honey, thyme, and butter.
- Cover the squash with foil. Roast until softened, 45 to 60 minutes. Uncover and set aside until cool enough to handle. Working in batches, scoop some of the softened squash and shallots into a food processor.
- Puree the squash mixture until smooth. Transfer to a serving bowl. Repeat with the remaining squash and shallots. Stir int he cream. Serve warm.
Recipe adapted from Real Simple