Many people associate squash with the holidays, and this dish may certainly be a part of any Thanksgiving or holiday celebration. It goes particularly well with mild meats such as turkey, pork, and roast chicken. However, I think this is an easy recipe to prepare any night, especially during the fall, when the days are getting shorter and we begin to crave comforting foods. It is a great alternative to mashed potatoes. Children love it, too.
- 6 pounds acorn or butternut squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter
- ¼ cup maple syrup
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Place the squash, cut side down, on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the squash is easily pierced with a fork.
Scoop the flesh into a bowl and mash with a potato masher or a fork until fairly smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
Combine the butter and maple syrup in a small saucepan and cook, stirring, over low heat until the butter is melted and blended with the syrup, about 2 minutes.
Stir half of the syrup mixture into the squash. Transfer the squash to a shallow serving dish. Pour the rest of the syrup mixture over the top.
This recipe serves 8, and includes 1/8 teaspoon of added salt per serving.