With Fall in full swing now, it’s impossible for me to resist almost any butternut squash recipe so when I came across this one in The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, possibly my favorite of all of Ina’s books, I knew it was the perfect addition to the Week with the Barefoot Contessa challenge. And I figured this would go over well with the rest of the BB members since the Butternut Squash Risotto went over so well last October.
In short, the caramelized butternut squash was dreamy. I absolutely loved it and Kyle who isn’t a huge butternut squash fan really enjoyed it as well. The combo of sweet and salty/peppery flavors here were just outstanding! The recipe itself was a piece of cake and since I decided to pick up some already peeled butternut squash, I know I saved myself some frustration by not having to peel it. I think the key to this recipe is to turn the squash a number of times while it’s baking. This way, you will ensure that all of the pieces are well-coated with the butter-sugar mixture on the baking sheet and will caramelize evenly. If I hadn’t already offered to bring all of the desserts to Thanksgiving dinner (thus saving my family the pain of eating my grandmother’s desserts), I would definitely bring this as a side dish!!
Caramelized Butternut Squash
source: Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, page 151
- 2 medium butternut squash (4 to 5 pounds total)
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Cut off and discard the ends of each butternut squash. Peel the squash, cut them in half lengthwise, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into 1 1/4 to 1 1/2-inch cubes and place them on a baking sheet. Add the melted butter, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. With clean hands, toss all the ingredients together and spread in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 45 to 55 minutes, until the squash is tender and the glaze begins to caramelize. While roasting, turn the squash a few times with a spatula, to be sure it browns evenly. Taste for seasonings and serve hot.