2. Side Dishes

Baked Winter Squash with Maple

Steamed winter squash can be mushy; baking can dry it out. I was delighted to find this method on the label on a butternut squash, because it avoids both of these problems.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Find a baking dish large enough to hold the squash halves and fill it with 3/4" of water. Put the squash into the dish, cut-side down, and bake for 30 minutes. Drain the water, turn the squash halves over, score with a knife. Then sprinkle cinnamon, ground coriander, salt, and pepper over each half; dot with butter; and pour a little maple syrup into the hollow. Bake for 30 minutes more.

Variation: Substitute fresh ginger for the cinnamon and coriander.

Note: I can never remember which winter squash has which qualities, but squash can handle a lot of seasoning. Some are sweeter than others, so adjust the amount of maple syrup accordingly. The amount of syrup and spices you use will depend on your personal taste and what you’re serving this with.

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