Savory · Sides

Sage & Butternut Squash Crostini

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Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I for one am beyond excited for its arrival. I love the simplicity of the holiday and what it stands for: to be thankful. It doesn’t revolve around gifts or some cutesy stuffed character who will deliver any sort of gift; rather it’s a rare holiday in which we reflect upon everything we have, be it tangible or emotional and practice gratitude. The older I become, the more I’ve found this holiday to be one of my absolute favorites.

It also is a fantastic opportunity to grub on some pretty spectacular food with the people we love.

Whether you are hosting or dining at someone’s house, this simple and flavorful appetizer is reminiscent of all things autumn, thanksgiving and delicious. No host or hostess would ever deny a guest the opportunity to contribute to the menu, why not wow them with something that will compliment the entree so wonderfully?

The puree can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator a few days early, then spread atop freshly toasted slices of baguette the day of your gathering. Top with shavings of parmesan cheese (grated would be lovely as well) and serve.

Final yield of the puree depends on the size of the butternut squash. I used an average size squash and it produced about 1 cup; plenty for spreading atop 1-1.5 sliced baguettes. Hosting a smaller gathering? Use larger bread & garnish as you would a slice of bruschetta.

Happy Thanksgiving from my kitchen to yours!

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium sized butternut squash, peeled, seeded & cut into 1″ cubes
  • 4 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 2 tbsp for roasting & 2 for the puree. I used California Olive Ranch.
  • 6 medium/large sage leaves
  • 3 oz. grated parmesan cheese + shaved pieces to garnish
  • 2 tsp garlic salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 1-2 baguette loaves, toasted

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 425. Peel the squash & remove the stalk. Cut in half and remove the seeds. Dice into 1″ cubes and lay out the cubes onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  2. Drizzle the squash with 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil & add the garlic salt + pepper. Toss together using clean hands and roast 45-55 minutes on the center rack of your oven. Let cool for 30 minutes.
  3. Using your food processor, blend together the roasted squash, sage leaves, grated parmesan cheese + remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil. Taste & season more per your preference with garlic salt or pepper.
  4. Slice the baguette loaf (loaves) into 1.5″ circles. Lay them onto a baking sheet and place under the broiler until toasted.
  5. Spread the puree atop each piece of bread + garnish with the shaved parmesan.

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