Tis the season for pumpkins. And other squashes: acorn, spaghetti, and of course, butternut. Jessica previously posted her recipe for butternut squash soup, which is my go-to way to eat this orange-on-the-inside gourd. But this preparation is another easy and delicious way to eat butternut squash.
Brown butter results when you cook the melted butter past the melting point, resulting in the milk solids in the butter browning, and creating a nutty flavor and aroma. It can go from brown butter to burnt butter in a flash, so keep a close eye on it and turn the heat off the pan as soon as the butter begins to brown. Tossed with the butternut squash it elevates the dish and gives it so much more flavor than plain old melted butter. Serve with your favorite protein or at your Thanksgiving table.
1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, diced into 1/2-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon of dried herbs (thyme, sage, Herbes de Provence)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add the butter, whisking frequently. Continue to cook the butter. Once melted it will foam up a bit, then subside. Honey-colored browned milk solids will begin to form. Remove from heat. Add the dried herbs, whisking continuously.
Add the cubed butternut squash pieces to the pan and return the pan to the burner, heating to medium high. Use a wooden or metal spoon to stir the squash pieces so they are all well coated with the butter thyme mixture. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Spread the squash pieces out in an even layer and let cook, without stirring, so that they brown a bit on one side (several minutes). Stir and spread the pieces out again and let cook without stirring so more sides get browned.
Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and let cook until the squash is tender, 10 to 20 minutes, depending on how big you cut the pieces. Add more salt and pepper to taste, and serve as a side dish.