Meatless Monday: Roasted Butternut Squash
You've probably been seeing a lot of recipes for butternut squash lately, and for good reason. It's rich, creamy and sweet, making it hard to believe that it's healthy -- a good source of fiber, low in fat, high in antioxidant-rich vitamin C kind of healthy.
Roasting is my cooking method of choice when it comes to butternut squash. Slicing the squash beforehand cuts out a big chunk of the roasting time. In a hot oven with just a touch of oil, salt and fresh herbs, the flesh softens and the edges caramelize in just a half hour. You can add it to any variety of dishes: toss it with quinoa, turn it into pasta or pair it with some stinky cheese. I love eating it just as it is out of the oven. I've even been known to use mashed leftovers to make the ultimate grilled cheese. Trust me on this.
Slice the squash into 3/8 inch/3/4 cm half-moons. Toss with the olive oil to coat. Arrange in slightly overlapping rows on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Scatter over the thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Dot the squash with the butter, then bake, turning halfway through roasting, until the squash is soft with slightly candied brown edges, 30 minutes.