Twice Baked Squash

A view of squash, onions and potatoes already harvested for the fall at our CSA farm.
The squash varieties are so fun.  There are butternut, acorn, delicata (the yellow and green striped one), and an heirloom variety called Thelma Louise (the pale orange acorn-type).
I'm pretty much the only person in my household that truly likes squash prepared in savory dishes.  The rest prefer sweet, baked goods.  I tried this recipe though and it went over decently well.  The real proof that it was a good one (besides how much I loved it) was when I took some leftovers for lunch at my school the next day.  Everyone was drooling over it.

For more pictures of the farm, stop on over at Young Ones today.

Twice Baked Winter Squash
serves 4
3 medium winter squash
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
3/4 cup plain kefir (You can use plain yogurt, buttermilk or sour cream here instead.  You may need to fiddle with the amount a bit to get the consistency you like but it should be in the 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup range.)
1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/8 to 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped, fresh chives (scallions would also work well)
1 tablespoon butter
4 tablespoons breadcrumbs

Heat oven to 450 degrees with the rack in center. 
Halve squash lengthwise, and remove seeds and fibers. 
Sprinkle squash halves with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. 
Fill a roasting pan with 1/4 inch water. 
Place squash in pan. 
Cover with aluminum foil, and bake until squash is tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 35 to 45 minutes. 
Remove from oven, transfer squash to a cool surface, and let cool enough to handle. 
Reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees.
Use a spoon to scoop baked flesh out of each half into a large bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch border around four of the halves so they will keep their shape. 
To the bowl, add kefir, garlic powder, parmesan, chives, and remaining teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. 
Mix with a potato masher until smooth and well combined. 
Taste and if necessary, season with additional salt and pepper. 
Fill the four reserved squash halves with mixture (discard remaining empty halves). *
Melt the butter in a shallow pan and add the breadcrumbs, toasting them lightly.
Sprinkle tops of the stuffed squash halves with toasted breadcrumbs. 
Bake until golden brown and warm throughout, 20 to 30 minutes. 
*This recipe takes a bit of time and to make it more manageable for a work night meal, I actually prepped up to the *(stuffing the squash) and then I covered the stuffed halves with aluminum foil and stuck them in the fridge for the next night.  
When I got home from work, I put the covered dish in the oven while it was heating to 425 and toasted the bread crumbs.  
Then I took it out, took the foil off, and added the bread crumbs.  
After that, I baked it for about 30 minutes.

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