I love fall for its crisp cool days, magnificent colours, sense of renewal, and frenetic pace. But mostly for the squash. Acorns and butternuts, delicatas and hubbards; I don’t discriminate. My door—and stomach—are open to gourds of all colours, shapes and sizes.
When I first met Kiwi he was alarmed at the degree to which squash figured in our weekly fall and winter menus. Having not grown up on it like I did, he took it for baby food. Mush. Not being one to give up, and particularly not where squash was concerned, I continued to dish it out. Roasted, mashed, sautéed. As a side dish, an appetizer, tossed with pasta and bitter greens. And years later, when I pressed him for his thoughts on squash, he declared: “Ya sure, I like squash.” Which, if you know my skeptic of a husband, is some serious progress.
The Bean thankfully has been an easier sell. Her recent reaction to a wedge of roasted acorn squash: “delicious mama”. Music to a time-crunched mommy chef’s ears.
The trouble with squash—and it pains me to admit there is one!—is definitely the peeling factor. The tough skin, and the ribs and crevices of many squash don’t lend themselves to standard potato peeling maneuvers.
Which is why this recipe is so fabulous. Just wedge up the squash, brush with a mixture of maple syrup and olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper and roast until tender and browned. No peeling required!
These squash wedges are an awesome accompaniment to grilled, roasted or braised meat, fish or chicken (i.e. pretty much anything). I’ve also been known to enjoy leftovers for lunch the next day, hooked up with a couple of poached eggs and some sautéed spinach. And because we are quickly nearing that festive time of year (gack!), they also make a perfect turkey-day side dish; you can even make them the day before and reheat in the oven or microwave just before serving.