Thursday, November 3, 2011

Crusted Butternut Squash

This recipe looks so beyond delicious, I can't wait to try it. Personally I love butternut squash. I had never had it until one day I decided to buy squash, randomly. I was walking home from work when I lived downtown and I stopped by the fruit market on the corner of my street where I always picked up stuff for dinner, and I spontaneously bought some. I had no idea how it tasted, I had no idea how to cook it and I had no idea if I'd like it, but I wanted something different and I'm not scared of food. I figured "what the hell, I'm not picky" and luckily neither was my boyfriend at the time.  So, I cut it in two, scooped out the seeds, spread butter, garlic, salt and pepper all over, sat both halves on a cookie sheet -without peeling it, mind you- and roasted it until tender, kinda just let it sit and cook like a baked potato. Random trial. It was a huge hit. Now whenever I make it for the husband I prepare it the same way, wrap it in tin foil and throw it on the grill with steak or chicken. Super simple and yummy. But this, I HAVE to try!!!

1 Butternut Squash (about 2 lbs.)
2 tsp. Olive Oil
1/2 tsp. Fresh Ground Nutmeg
1/3 Cup Fresh Breadcrumbs / Panko
1/2 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Minced Garlic Clove
1 Tbsp. Finely Chopped Parsley
1/4 Cup Fresh Thyme Leaves
Salt and Pepper

Oven to 400
Peel the squash (vegetable peeler works great). Slice it in half length wise and discard the seeds. Cut into 1/4” slices.
On a parchment lined baking tray, pile the squash, drizzle the olive oil and the nutmeg and toss everything to coat evenly. All should have a thin coat of oil, amount may vary based on size of the squash. Spread them out in a single layer on the baking tray. You may need to use two, too much overlap won’t yield a crunchy crust.
In a food processor (or magic bullet) pulse together the breadcrumbs, parmesan, garlic, both herbs, a few pinches of salt and a lot of fresh black pepper.
Sprinkle the topping on the squash. Bake for about 25-30 minutes until the tops are browned and the squash is cooked.

Bon appetit mes amies!

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