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Delicata squash becomes a pretty, delicious side

| Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012

Here's a super-simple, super-delicious side that's a keeper: a few ingredients, a straightforward cooking method and a type of squash that's easy to carve.

More reasons I like to use delicata squash: It's pretty, it's widely available and it has a thin skin that can be left on while it's roasted. Serve it with the skin on; guests can just cut it it away as they eat.

If you don't have a 12-inch by 17-inch rimmed baking sheet (which is what I used), divide the roasting mixture between two smaller pans.

To serve, use a large, flat spatula to transfer the roasted squash and onion slices; that will keep them from breaking up. Serve with roast chicken or pork tenderloin, or just on its own.

Parmesan-Crusted Delicata Squash

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 3 medium or 2 large (2 pounds total) delicata squash, cut lengthwise in half, seeded and sliced into 1/4-inch-thick quarter-moons
  • 1 medium onion, cut in half and then into thin slices
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigano-Reggiano cheese

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a 12-inch by 17-inch rimmed baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Coat the foil with nonstick cooking oil spray.

Arrange the squash and onion slices on the baking sheet. Drizzle the oil over them, then season them with salt and pepper, mixing the squash and onion gently with your hands to coat evenly. Rearrange so the slices are loosely but evenly layered. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until they are soft but not falling apart. (If you are using two smaller pans, keep a close eye on the slices, which might cook faster if they spread in a single layer in those pans.)

Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the roasted squash and onion, then roast for 5 minutes so the cheese melts/softens.

Use a spatula to transfer to a platter or individual plates; serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition information per serving: 80 calories, 4 grams fat (1 gram saturated), 0 cholesterol, 2 grams protein, 11 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams dietary fiber, 70 milligrams sodium

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