Walnuts, Cranberries and Winter Squash
● By Lana Granfors
By Lana Granfors
Photo by Kara Stewart
With the cooler months come the winter squashes. The varieties are versatile, flavorful and packed with nutrients. You have many choices to brighten up your fall and winter meals: acorn, butternut, delicata, sweet pumpkin or spaghetti squash, to name a few. Any of these would work well in this easy recipe. Most can be found at our local markets and our farmers markets, and some local stores carry peeled and cut, ready-to-bake packages of butternut squash. The walnuts and cranberries add texture and a bit of tang to this dish, while the maple syrup enhances the natural earthy sweetness of the squash. This wonderful and simple recipe is perfect for busy households.
1 2-pound winter squash, peeled, seeded and cut in 1-inch cubes
2 T olive oil
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
1 T chopped fresh thyme
½ cup maple syrup
½ cup chopped walnuts
¼ cup dried cranberries
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
STEP 1: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
STEP 2: Cut about 1 inch off the top and bottom of the squash, discarding these ends. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the thick skin. With a sharp knife, cut squash in half and use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fibers inside. Slice the squash into 1-inch slices and then cut these slices into 1-inch chunks.
STEP 3: Place the cut chunks on a roasting pan or in a deep baking dish and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss.
STEP 4: Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the pieces begin to turn a golden brown around the edges, then turn and continue baking for another 15 minutes until tender.
STEP 5: Transfer cooked squash to a serving bowl. Add the thyme, maple syrup, walnuts and cranberries. Toss to blend and serve.