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    Monday, October 28, 2013

    Savory Baked Acorn Squash (no sugar!) Recipe

    Savory Baked Acorn Squash (no sugar!)

    On a recent grocery shopping trip I bought an acorn squash, but after I got home I started to think: "Now what am I going to do with this? I don't want to cook it with brown sugar/maple syrup and make it uber-sweet. I want something savory!" It sat for a while in my pantry while I tried to come up with how to prepare it. My previous internet searches only pulled up recipes for the sugary version of this dish (boo!), so last night I finally just decided to try making this similar to how I prepare another squash (Spaghetti Squash) with the basic salt/pepper/butter mix (for Spaghetti Squash I add in parmesan cheese!) and see how the Acorn Squash fared.

    Once I got to the seasoning stage in my cooking experiment, I decided to try 2 different seasonings - I had 2 different halves after all! 
    Baked Acorn Squash (Savory, no Sugar) 10-27-2013

    On the one on the Left (picture above) I added a couple pinches of dried Thyme sprinkled over the cut half. On the other (Right squash half shown in above picture) I added in a sprinkling of Garlic POWDER. (I already had salt on it so no need to use garlic salt as that would over-salt it). Recipe is written up below.

    I tried the Thyme flavored half last night and I really liked it! Today for lunch I ate the Garlic flavored one today...and it was another winner. (I do like Garlic after all! Next time I might try mincing up some fresh garlic to sprinkle/spread on one. :).



    Recipe is sized for a 2 person serving (one half squash per person)...
    ...or 1 person plus leftovers for a future meal. ;-)

    Prep Time: approx 10-15 minutes (or as long as it takes for your oven to preheat)
    Cook Time: approx. 40-60 minutes

    1 Acorn Squash
    1+ cup water
    2+/- Tbl Salted Butter
    Fresh Ground Pepper (to taste)
    Kosher Salt (to Taste) - I prefer to use Kosher Salt as its easier to not over-salt things. :) Plus I like the tactile feel of it.

    & one of the following Seasonings:
        - Thyme (dried) - about 2 pinches
        - Garlic Powder - sprinkle to taste

    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
    2. Half the Squash (being careful to not cut yourself!) & remove the seeds/insides with a spoon.
    3. Using a knife, score the flesh around the cut side of the squash (& also poke a few holes into the backside - the outer skin).
    4. Place the squash cut side down in baking dish with about a cup of water.
    5. Microwave for about 5-6 minutes. When oven is heated, move dish to Oven (covering dish with foil) and cook for approx 20 minutes or until starting to get tender.
    6. Flip squash over so that the cut side is up and place about 1 Tbl of salted butter into each half (in the well).
    7. Rub a bit of the butter (as it starts to melt) onto the scored edges, just enough to lightly coat it.
    8. Grind fresh pepper (to taste) onto the cut squash, then sprinkle kosher salt onto the squash (also to taste).
    9. I added a few pinches of dried thyme (sprinkled) to the Squash on the Left; for the squash on the right I sprinkled some garlic powder.
    10. Return the dish to the oven for another 20-30 minutes (occasionally basting with the melted butter in the well).
    11. Remove from oven when the cut edges are starting to brown and its easy to pierce the flesh of the squash with a fork.
    12. Let sit (rest) a few minutes to cool before serving.

    To serve, I cut just inside the rind/skin with a butter knife (as the flesh is now nice & soft) and score it a few times before serving it whole. Using your fork/spoon, dip pieces of the cut flesh into melted butter and Enjoy!

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