Have Butternut Will Caramelize

Butternut squash is the current food blog squash darling. Everybody wants a piece of butternut squash right now and this is the best squash to kick off squash week due to its delightful texture and taste.

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Why did I choose squash week for the second week of October? Because I am not an idiot and fall is all about leaves, cold weather, gourds everywhere and dishes that are hot and sweet.

Before we go further, I got the recipe from Genius Kitchen but the description said its from her Grace, Ina Garten. Once I saw her name thrown out there I knew I had to make it and hope that it wouldn’t require that good vanilla.

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It calls for actually peeling the butternut squash, but a little secret about squash is that 99% of squash you encounter doesn’t need to be peeled. YOU CAN EAT THE SKIN WITH NO CONCERN!

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The fun thing about butternut is that it doesn’t have seeds running all the way up the neck of it. You can see above that there is just a little bowl worth of seeds you have to scoop out.

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Fair warning, much like the chayote, raw butternut squash will cause your hands to peel and get ridiculously super dry. I happened to see the note on the page but I didn’t have any gloves so I just carefully sliced and hacked my way through this and only managed to get one thumb peeling.

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For looking so daunting, this whole recipe was incredibly easy. You slice it up, take out the seeds, chop up, toss in butter, brown sugar, salt and pepper and roast until it gets a bit crispy and you can enjoy that sweet reward.

I know this is covered in butter and sugar, but the flavor was like eating a pastry filling. The squash had a creamy texture to it and was packed with flavor. The last squash I had eaten were some zucchini and summer squash tossed with onion and the texture was more chewy. The butternut squash will melt in your mouth and now I am curious if that is how it got its name. ( I looked, its not).

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It is totally up to you whether or not to leave the skin on, but I highly recommend leaving it on. When you bite into it, its like a sticky skin that really enhances the texture of the inside.

Fun fact, after cooking all day I had some chili going on in the crockpot. I had read earlier that people actually pair cinnamon rolls with chili. I think it was a midwest or northwest thing maybe, and I had also heard of putting pumpkin in chili to add some more vegetable power to it. After I made this batch, I totally put some chili on top of some of this and it was pretty good. I think if it had cinnamon sprinkled on it it would have been fantastic but the sweet and spicy was a welcome combination.

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Overall opinion of butternut squash? Definitely the best texture of the squash family, it was creamy but not mushy which is the absolute worst feeling to have when you’re eating something. It could work in savory dishes for sure, but I was just feeling the sweet dish to make sure that I enjoyed it and I have no doubts that I would like it just roasted with salt and pepper.

There is week 38 for you, in week 40. Again, each squash this week is to make up for missed weeks and to plan ahead for the next weeks because every squash is different and unique and I am sparing you 30 days worth of squash.

Author: Olivia O.

East Tennessee native with an interest in food and trying new things.

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