Posts Tagged ‘butternut squash’

by Sarah Steimer

Butter-nutty squash soup

Great name, right? It comes from the nutty flavor that tahini adds to the soup. Sure, sesame seeds aren’t nuts, but they have an amazing earthy, nutty flavor that need not be reserved just for hummus.


Read Full Post »

by Caitlin Saniga

Use what you have! Some options: beets, turnips, radishes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, fingerlings, carrots, rutabega.

Use what you have! Some options: beets, turnips, radishes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, fingerlings, carrots, rutabaga. The more colorful, the better!

  • 1 medium turnip, scrubbed and trimmed
  • 1 medium parsnip, scrubbed, trimmed and peeled
  • 1 medium sweet potato, scrubbed and peeled
  • 5 red skin potatoes, scrubbed and trimmed
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled and seeded
  • olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Chop the vegetables into 1/2-inch cubes and place in a large bowl. Drizzle olive oil lightly over the vegetables and toss to coat. Add the rosemary, garlic and a some good grinds of salt and pepper. Transfer the vegetables to a large glass baking pan. Roast in the oven, stirring every 10 minutes or so, for 30-40 minutes, or until vegetables soften and turn golden. Serve warm.

Makes 6 servings.

Read Full Post »

by Sarah Steimer

We get lots of awesome Wisconsin cheese here in Chicago that you can find in specialty stores or just a regular grocery store.

  • 1/2 small butternut squash, seeded
  • 3 medium sunchokes, peeled (also known as Jerusalem artichokes – ALL OVER farmer’s markets right now)
  • 12 ounces pasta – I used mini shells
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 3/4 cups nonfat milk
  • 1/4 cup vegetable stock
  • 4 ounces Muenster cheese, grated
  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs

Prepare a baking sheet or glass baking dish with a layer of aluminum foil. Lay the squash, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Add the peeled sunchokes to the sheet, and roast in the oven at 450 degrees for about 25-30 minutes, or until the squash is tender when pierced with a knife.

Scoop the squash out of the flesh and place into a mixing bowl and mash. Add the roasted sunchokes, mashing to incorporate them with the butternut squash.

The squash and sunchoke add a really earthy flavor to the dish – and since you clearly don’t notice them, it would be a pretty fantastic way to get kids to eat their veggies.

Cook the pasta according to package directions, or until al dente, drain, return to the pot, remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Place a medium saucepan over medium heat. Melt the butter in the saucepan, then whisk in the flour and mustard. Continue whisking for about 1 minute, then slowly add in the milk, stirring constantly. Bring the mixture to a simmer, lower heat to medium-low and keep simmering, whisking frequently, for 5-6 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened to the consistency of heavy cream.

Season the sauce with the pepper and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add the squash sunchoke mash, Muenster and cheddar, stirring with a wooden spoon until the cheese has melted. The color turns a really bright, almost fake-looking orange.

Pour the cheese sauce into the cooked macaroni, stirring to ensure all ingredients are evenly incorporated. Preheat your broiler.

Pour the macaroni into a medium baking dish and top with the breadcrumbs. Broil for about 10 minutes, or until the bubbly with brown edges.

Makes about 10 servings.

Recipe adapted from: Cold Cereal and Toast via Meatless Monday

*Throughout November, “Out of the Box” will guide you away from prepackaged mac and cheese and will feature oodles of our favorite recipes  –  all of which can be found here.

Read Full Post »

by Sarah Steimer

This is a fantastic recipe - but it does require a couple hours to prep and cook. It pays off, though, when all you have to do is reheat your dinner for a few nights.

  • 3 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 pound fresh mozzarella cheese, coarsely chopped (2 cups)
  • nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter OR olive oil
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable stock or chicken stock
  • nine lasagna noodles, cooked
  • 4 ounces finely grated Parmesan cheese (1 1/4 cups)

Toss squash, oil and 1 teaspoon salt on a baking sheet. Season with pepper. Bake at 425 degrees until light gold and tender, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool.

Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees. Combine ricotta, cream, yolks, mozzarella and a pinch of nutmeg in a medium bowl. Season with salt.

When I'm cooking for just Bill and I, it's better to use a smaller pan. I go with an 8-by-8-inch pan and make a little more than half the recipe.

Melt butter (or heat olive oil) in a small saute pan over medium-high heat. As soon as it starts to sizzle, add sage and cook until light gold and slightly crisp at edges, 3 to 4 minutes.

Place squash in a medium bowl, and mash 1/2 of it with the back of a wooden spoon, leaving the other 1/2 in whole pieces.  Gently stir in sage-butter mixture and stock.

In a 9-by-13-inch baking dish, layer ricotta mixture, noodles, squash, noodles. Repeat – in that order – two more times, ending with the noodles. Top with the Parmesan. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes or until the top is browned and a little bubbly.

Serves eight.

Recipe: Martha Stewart

Read Full Post »

by Sarah Steimer

The flavors are very good, but very intense. This is definitely better as a side dish than a main dish.

  • 3 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced into   1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 cups apple cider
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon rosemary, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • pepper, to taste

Melt butter in a wide-brimmed sauce pan.  Add chopped rosemary and cook on medium-high until butter has slightly browned.

Add chopped butternut squash and toss until thoroughly coated with rosemary butter.  Add apple cider. If the squash is not submerged, add water. Season with salt. Bring to a boil then lower heat to simmer for about 20 minutes or until tender.

I may use a little less cider and a little more water next time. I can get down with cider - but I'm more of a salty/savory gal when it comes to dinner.

When nearly finished cooking, add apple cider vinegar.  If there is too much liquid left in the pan, turn up the heat and cook off remaining liquid quickly until left with an amber glaze.  Add more salt and pepper, to taste.

Serves about four to six as a side dish.

Recipe: Local Flavors

Read Full Post »

by Sarah Steimer

This galette recipe is very autumn-y, but all of my ingredients are winter fresh.

Let me preface this by saying this is one of the best recipes I’ve tried. I sent Caitlin a text right after eating it and said, “Don’t you love when you try a new recipe and think, ‘Wow, this is maybe one of the most delicious things I’ve ever made.'” You have to try this because it’s also unbelievably easy and fresh. And if you’re wondering (like I was), galette is pronounced “GAL-let,” sounds very French.

For the crust

  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced (1 stick)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Mix flour and salt. Add the diced butter to the flour mixture and incorporate with your hands until coarse crumbs appear. Add the egg and continue to mix by hand. If the dough is still dry, add a couple tablespoons of cold water until all the ingredients stick together (but aren’t too sticky). Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

For the filling

  • 1 large baking apple
  • 1 small or 1/2 medium butternut squash (about 3/4 pound)
  • 1 small yellow onion or half of a sweet onion
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons seasoning (I used fresh rosemary and dried thyme)
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain or brown mustard
  • 1⁄3 cup or Gouda or other cheese

Cut the apple, onion and squash into equal-sized wedges. I found it easiest to slice the squash from the neck-down, width-wise, so you are left with discs. I cut these discs in half and discarded the skins. Toss with the butter, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper.

Golden and aromatic galette out of the oven.

Roll the dough out to form a 12-inch circle and place on a cooking sheet. Alternate the apple, onion and squash slices in overlapping circles, leaving two inches around the edge. Fold these edges up and over the filling. Bake at 400 degrees for about 55 minutes or until the crust is golden. Add the cheese on top and bake for an additional five minutes. Cut and serve.

Recipe adapted from: Food Network Kitchens Cook

Photos: Sarah Steimer

Read Full Post »

by Caitlin Saniga

This quesadilla is three layers of awesome. And don't even kid yourself — you can't eat it on your own.

  • 4 8-inch flour tortillas
  • 1 8-ounce package peeled chopped butternut squash, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 cup chopped white onion
  • 1 15- to 16-ounce can black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1/2 cup salsa, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, divided
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 cup coarsely grated hot pepper Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • sour cream, if desired
  • additional salsa
  • fresh cilantro sprigs (for garnish)
First layer: black bean mixture (black beans, salsa, chili powder and garlic) plus cilantro

First layer: black bean mixture (black beans, salsa, chili powder and garlic) plus cilantro

Preheat broiler. Put tortillas in a single layer on a baking sheet. Brush lightly with oil. Broil until toasted, 2 or 3 minutes. Turn; set aside.

Second layer: cheese

Place squash in a microwave-safe bowl. Sprinkle water over, cover with plastic wrap and microwave until just tender, about 3 minutes; drain.

Third layer: squash and onions

Third layer: squash and onions

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute until beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Add squash; stir 1 minute. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Spread out the  squash in an even layer over 1 tortilla. Add 1 tablespoon oil to skillet. Add beans, 1/4 cup salsa, garlic, and chili powder. Using a potato masher, crush until beans are coarsely mashed; season with salt and pepper. Stir in 1/4 cup salsa. Spread over second tortilla. Sprinkle cheese over third tortilla. Leave fourth tortilla plain.

Broil tortillas until cheese melts and vegetables are browned in spots, about 3 minutes, watching to prevent burning. Transfer black bean tortilla to plate; sprinkle 1/4 cup cilantro over. Top with cheese tortilla, squash tortilla, then plain tortilla. Cut into 4 wedges. Garnish with sour cream, salsa and cilantro sprigs.

Makes 4 servings.

Recipe: Bon Appetit

Photos: Caitlin Saniga

Read Full Post »

by Sarah Steimer

The best part is the crispy panko breadcrumb topping.

  • 1 small butternut squash (about one pound) cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 1/2 cups skim milk
  • nutmeg, to taste
  • cayenne pepper, to taste
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 1 cup extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3 tablespoons panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese

Combine squash, stock and milk in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium; simmer until squash is tender when pierced with a fork, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Mash contents of saucepan; stir in nutmeg, cayenne, and salt and season with black pepper. Stir to combine.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add noodles; cook until al dente. Drain, and transfer to a large bowl; stir in squash mixture, cheddar, ricotta, and 2 tablespoons Parmesan.

Lightly coat a glass baking dish with cooking spray. Transfer noodle mixture to dish. In a small bowl, combine breadcrumbs, remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan and oil; sprinkle evenly over noodle mixture.

Cover with foil and bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Remove foil and continue baking until lightly browned and crisp on top, 30 to 40 minutes more. Serve immediately.

Serves about six.

Recipe adapted from: Martha Stewart

Photo: Sarah Steimer

Read Full Post »

by Caitlin Saniga

I first made this pasta with angel hair pasta, and it felt more delicate. I liked that. But I always have about 20 boxes of linguine laying around, so I tried that for this version, and it worked.

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 pear or Gala apple, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • juice from two clementines or one orange
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 box angel hair pasta (or spaghetti or linguine)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese

Sweet potatoes (left) and butternut squash were made for each other.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add squash, sweet potato, pear, clementine juice, garlic, sage, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Cover and let cook for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally until squash and sweet potatoes are tender when pricked with a fork. Add water to keep ingredients moist if needed.

Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package directions. When pasta is cooked and drained, toss with olive oil. Serve pasta with a mound of squash mixture and Parmesan on top.

Makes 6 servings.

Recipe: Caitlin Saniga

Photo: Caitlin Saniga

Read Full Post »