savory squash puree
Every fall, when squash is in season, I think of a time when my husband and I were first dating. I had made dinner for the two of us. I don’t even really remember the menu, except there was squash on it. When I told him that we were having squash, he off-handedly referred to it as “squish.” I gave him my furrowed brow expression. Did he really not know how to say the word correctly? But I soon realized that he called it that because he didn’t like it. Huh? How could you not love the most sweet and savory, satisfying, unctuous fall vegetable? I remember serving it to him anyway. I had already decided that I really liked this guy and picky-eating was a deal-breaker for me. That’s sort-of how I roll with anyone who tries to be picky, I just ignore it and it will go away.
Since then, I realized that it was pretty naïve for me to be shocked. Squash is not well loved by a lot of people. But I sort of think maybe it’s because they haven’t been preparing it correctly. Or maybe they just need to give it another try. Too bad, because squash is nutrient rich. According to www.eatright.org most varieties of winter squashes “provide nearly 6 grams of fiber in one cup and are a good source of potassium, vitamin C, folate, magnesium, iron and calcium.” So I say, even folks who don’t like it should try it again with nutritional stats like those!
So over the years I just plugged away serving squash to him. Quickly he stopped having to choke it down. And eventually he stopped calling it “squish.” Now we’re at the point where he loves it as much as me. A few weeks ago when I made this recipe, he inhaled his serving and said, “This is off the hook!” Then he got up from the table to serve himself seconds. Thank Goodness, because he’s a keeper.
Savory squash puree with herbs and broth- can be made completely vegan if you use vegetable broth. Perfect for a healthy Thanksgiving side dish
- 1 4 ½ to 5 ½-pound Blue Hubbard Squash
- 1 cup reduced-sodium broth, vegetable or chicken, heated, divided
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs, such as thyme, oregano, parsley and rosemary (see *ingredient note)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- Arrange oven rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment.
- Cut squash in half along the equator and scoop out the seeds. Lay cut-side down on the prepared baking sheet and roast until soft, 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on the size of the squash. To check if it is done, carefully press on the skin of the squash. You should feel the flesh give slightly. Let cool, cut side up at least 10 minutes before handling. Using two spoons, carefully scoop the flesh from one side out into a food processor. Add ½ cup of the heated broth and process until completely smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary. Transfer to a medium bowl. Repeat with the remaining squash and broth.
- Heat oil and garlic in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring or shaking the skillet until it starts to sizzle. Continue cooking until the garlic is just turning golden in spots, 2 to 5 minutes. Immediately add the herbs and remove from the heat. Pour the oil mixture into the squash puree. Add the salt and pepper and stir until completely combined.
*Ingredient note: I used a blend that was 50% chopped parsley and the other 50% was a blend of oregano, rosemary and thyme. If you’re going through the trouble, make extra and store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. You can add it to all sorts of goodies like turkey and biscuits casserole, scrambled eggs, savory muffins
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 120
- Sugar: 0 g
- Sodium: 440 mg
- Fat: 5.6 g
- Saturated Fat: 1 g
- Carbohydrates: 21 g
- Fiber: 3 g
- Protein: 1 g