In her e-book series Fresh Pantry, author Amy Pennington introduces readers to fresh seasonal ingredients to help those trying to eat a sustainable, seasonal diet. In Fresh Pantry: Winter Squash, (Skipstone, 2013) Pennington kicks off the 12-month e-book series by featuring original and inspired recipes for winter squash that will liven up your kitchen without boring your palate.
This recipe is a slam dunk. It is so simple, I’m almost embarrassed to include it here, but this tried-and-true dish demands attention. I cook this when I’m too busy to think but I want to eat something easy and healthy. It takes about 3 minutes to prepare and get in the oven, and I can do chores or work while it is baking. I love serving this side with a simply baked fish, but honestly I often eat it right out of the pan while standing up in my kitchen.
Maple-Baked Acorn Squash Recipe
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
• 1 acorn squash, washed, cut in half, seeds removed
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 2 tablespoons maple syrup (or brown sugar)
• 4 fresh sage leaves
• Coarse salt
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Place the acorn squash halves, cut side up, in a pie tin or small roasting pan. Add 1 tablespoon of the butter and the syrup to each cavity, along with the sage leaves. Bake for 45 minutes, or until the squash is tender and can be easily pierced with a fork.
3. Remove from the oven and let cool 5 minutes before handling. Discard the sage leaves and, using a fork, scrape the flesh up from the skin, mixing to combine flavors. Sprinkle with coarse salt and serve.
PANTRY NOTE: Acorn squash is the best choice for this recipe. Its porous and thick nature allows the maple and butter to seep in with-out being too stringy. This dish holds in the fridge for one day before becoming too dry.
This excerpt has been reprinted with permission from Fresh Pantry: Winter Squash by Amy Pennington and published by Skipstone, 2013.