Sunday, December 11, 2011

Winter Squash A-Z: Butternut Squash Epic Fail....Almost!

Some of you might say you can't go wrong with Butternut Squash but, I'm here to say: Yes you can!  I actually made a few attempts with one squash and three recipes.  Now, I will be the first to admit that I don't have varied experience when consuming butternut squash.  No one has ever cooked it for me and I've never seen it on the menu at a restaurant in any form.  I do feel like I had heard of a lot of it being made into a soup so I was wanting to do something a little different than "the norm."  Steering as far away from silky soup as possible I decided to try a recipe that I saw on Dr Oz over a year ago.  It was one of those recipes I had been meaning to try for forever but, hadn't gotten around to.  The Hungry Girl Blog author raved about it on Dr Oz and I willingly believed.  I will say however, that it didn't live up to expectations.  Has anyone made these Butternut Squash fries and had success? It sounded great...a lower calorie alternative to sweet potato fries!  Was it something I did wrong? I really LOVE sweet potato fries so I thought this would be right up my alley too but, something just didn't taste right.  Very disappointing after the prep time of cutting, drying, etc. I started to wonder if it was my prego taste buds but, even Annabel wouldn't eat them and she's not a picky eater so.... I shared all that to say that I am NOT sharing that recipe with you  today. 

Next, I was eager to redeem the poor squash which I had only used a third of.  I decided to go a more traditional route and had a little time while Ogglet napped to make something nice for dinner.  I decided to make a Butternut Squash Bisque recipe from one of my cookbooks and a garlic and cheese biscuit with salad.   Sounds good right?  I started the recipe the silliest way possible.  Rather than reading it to be sure I had the ingredients I just jumped right in assuming I knew more or less what would be in this soup.  I was surprised part-way through to discover that it called for some potatoes.  This was unexpected (to me at least) but, it seemed like a small amount compared to the other ingredients so I was unconcerned.  After making this first bisque actually I was soooooo disappointed.  The potatoes in my opinion ruined the texture.  It gave the bisque a graininess that you would not expect from butternut squash puree.  Annabel liked it though and not wanting to be wasteful I reheated and ate this with the biscuits for lunch two days after. I will admit it grew on me a bit...actually reminded me of the base to a corn chowder my mom used to make when I was a kid.  But, I wanted a creamy butternut soup NOT corn chowder without the corn so, this too I consider a fail.  If anybody reading this knows a great butternut squash recipe for soup please send it my way and it will be appreciated!
If you've read this far into my post, i certainly appreciate your dedication and don't want to leave you empty handed so here is a recipe you must try!  It is very simple and easy to make and since I don't remember now where I first learned it I'm just going to give you a rough description of how I make it.  This is the one butternut squash recipe that I know for sure is a winner.  It's so easy to make but is so unique to most people that it really is a special dish to serve for family or friends.  I've been making it for a few winters now and my hubby never gets tired of it and neither do I.

Ravioli with Butternut Squash Puree

Cut squash into 1" cubes and boil until soft. 
Once soft, puree squash in a food processor or blender.   I use some of the water from boiling the squash to bring the puree to a pasta sauce consistency.  
Return puree to pot (minus the excess water of course) to reheat.  Then add salt, nutmeg and cinnamon to taste.  Depending on the squash I have often added a few tablespoons of brown sugar as well but, this is totally optional.  If you prefer more savory flavor you could also add pepper....just do what feels right! 
In the meantime boil your favorite cheese ravioli.  When ravioli is done, drain and ladle squash puree over like you would any sauce.  A little grated Parmesan on top will give it a nice touch.  Now, enjoy!


Ogglet loves soup!

No comments:

Post a Comment