As we begin our second week of the winter squash theme, I am reveling in all dishes comprised of winter squash. For me, I think they’re more than an ingredient, they could be a food category of their own. I have used them in dishes at all times of day, from pancakes at the start of the day to an ice cream to cap off the evening. Last week we focused on all of the delicious soups that highlight winter squash. This week we’re going to take a peek at some appetizer and side dish recipes from the Think Tasty archives. There’s no need to serve plain old puréed squash when you can make something much more exciting!
We’ll start with a couple appetizer recipes. I’m pretty sure these recipes could convince even a squash-averse diner to give them a try.
Bacon Wrapped Butternut Squash– This recipe is a conversion tool. Offer squash wrapped in bacon, and I’m pretty sure anyone will give them a try. I mean, who’s above using bacon as a bribe? When you combine the salty crunchiness of bacon with the sweet tenderness of butternut squash you have created a beautiful pairing.
Roasted Butternut Squash & Fennel Quinoa Tartlets– This recipe makes a lovely appetizer. First, you have a perfectly portioned snack as they are baked in mini muffin pans. Second, they are topped with a jalapeno honey, providing a nice mix of sweet and heat. Third, these are some of the healthiest tartlets I’ve seen. What’s not to like?
Now that you’ve started your dinner with some tasty squash snacks, why not continue with a couple sides?
Sunshine Squash with Sage & Cider– In the fall, cider becomes a prominent beverage whether served hot or cold. It also makes a fine ingredient in many a dish, including this squash side. The cider adds a hint of sweetness while the sage provides a nice savory bite. If you can’t find sunshine squash, use your favorite winter squash.
Brûléed Butternut Squash– This dish was the one that convinced my kids that winter squash was really an acceptable side dish. Now, I will confess that this dish has a good amount of sugar for a side dish. However, under that sugar is a healthy portion of squash, so in my mind it’s a fair trade. Try it and see what happens.
Whether you’re surrounded by a group of squash fans or foes, these recipes should inspire everyone to want another serving.