On my kitchen counter sits a basket of colorful squash. There is the traditional orange pie pumpkin, a dark green Japanese Cabocha with an orange bottom, a light yellow Delicata, a Butternut, and a Festival one which looks like it has been splattered with green and orange paint. I’ve been eager to experiment with these beauties!
The first dish I had to make was one of our favorites, butternut squash lasagna. It is flavored with sage infused browned butter, roasted pecans, a couple of cheeses, and a dash of nutmeg. I like to roast the squash at least one day ahead to make things easier. One bonus, it makes the house smell “in season”.
Butternut Squash Lasagna
- 1/2 of a large butternut squash (or 2 cups)
- 1 package no boil lasagna (I ended up doing 8 layers)
- 3 T. butter
- 2 large sage leaves or 1 t. dried
- 1/3 c. whole milk or cream
- 1/3 c. pecans
- 1/8 t. nutmeg
- 1 c. soft, melting cheese (I used Asadero)
- 1 c. grated parmesan (I used SarVecchio)
- 1/4 c. crushed ginger cookies/graham crackers/breadcrumbs (for topping)
Halve and bake the squash, flesh side down. You can start cold and put the oven on 400 degrees, F. Bake for about 40 minutes. Turn the oven off and let it sit in there until cool. Scoop out the flesh. Refrigerate for later use or use right away. Roast the pecans in the oven on 225 F for 10-12 minutes until you can smell it. Let it cool then roughly chop. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, slowly melt the butter then drop in the sage leaves. After about 5 minutes on low, you will get a little browning in the liquid. Turn it off and save the leaves for garnishing.
Mash the squash in large bowl, add milk, browned butter, grated cheeses, pecans and nutmeg. Save some cheese and pecans for topping. Layer the pasta and filling in a loaf pan. Bake covered at 375 degrees F for about 40 minutes. After that, take off the cover then broil on high until you’ve got a brown and bubbly topping.
This is a very versatile dish. Feel free to add more or less cheese. You can even have cheese layers contrasting with the squash and experiment with different cheeses like ricotta or triple cream Havarti. If you haven’t got pecans, walnuts would work just as well. If you don’t have sage, thyme would be fabulous! Happy cooking. 🙂
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