Hurray for the nutty sweetness and deep nourishment we get from roasted harvest squashes! This ultra-simple recipe practically makes itself, and the results embody all the colors, textures, and flavors of fall.
A touch of butter and maple syrup is all it takes to turn this dish into a masterpiece (or you can add optional fresh ginger and pecans to really gild the lily). Anti-oxidants, minerals, and true fall taste: Maple-Roasted Acorn Squash has it all.
2 acorn squash
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
4 tablespoons maple syrup
3 teaspoons minced fresh ginger (optional)
4 tablespoons chopped pecans (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400F. Slice a thin piece off both ends of the squash, including the stem. Cut the squash in half crosswise (perpendicular to the ribs). Scoop out the seeds with a sturdy spoon.
2. Line a pan in which the squash can fit snugly with foil or parchment paper. If you use foil, rub with butter to prevent squash from sticking.
3. Set the squash halves in the prepared baking pan and smear the flesh with the softened butter. Sprinkle with the salt. Drizzle maple syrup over the cut edge of the squash and into the cavity (most of the liquid will pool there) and sprinkle with the ginger, if using.
4. Roast the squash halves until nicely browned and very tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 hour and 15 minutes for a small to medium squash (larger squash may take longer); add the pecans, if using, for the last 10 minutes of cooking. Do not undercook. Serve warm with a spoon.