My Instagram feed is looking a little orange lately, it comes with the territory during the autumn months with the abundance of root vegetables available and I love their comforting flavours. This roasted hasselback butternut squash has been making a regular appearance on our table lately and with good reason – it’s simple, fuss free and goes wonderfully as a side or as a main in it’s own right.
1 butternut squash
1 tablespoon chopped sage
1 teaspoon chilli flakes
2 tablespoons honey
25g butter, diced
1 pinch salt
Preheat the oven to 200c
Slice the squash lengthways before using a spoon to scrape out the seeds, then top and tail before peeling with a potato peeler – this is fairly time consuming but worth it to get a lovely smooth base. Then place them flat side down on a lined baking tray.
Using a sharp knife carefully cut very thin slits across the squash – making sure you only take the knife a third of the way down so as not to break them, you can score the rest of the way down the sides with the knife afterwards.
drizzle the honey over the top of the squash and rub it in with your hands to make sure it is completely covered, then evenly distribute the diced butter so that it soaked into the slits as it melts and sprinkle the chopped sage, chilli and salt over the top.
Bake in the oven for 45-60 minutes depending on the size of your squash, and serve. See – I told you it was easy!
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Big batch soup cooking really signals the arrival of colder weather to me and today is no exception. After a muddy, windy run on the common this morning, I came home needing a warming bowl of soup. Packed with nutrients, this one is an all round good-egg. Feel free to add in any other root veg you have hanging around the kitchen.
Sage – a tablespoon, chopped.
2 medium butternut squash
500g celariac, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 carrots, diced
1.5-2 litres of veg stock depending on how thick you like your soup
Natural yoghurt to top
Olive oil to drizzle
Crusty bread to dunk
Preheat oven to 180c
Top and tail the butternut squash, cut into quarters lengthways and lay flesh side up in a baking tray. Season well with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle the sage over the squash, then if there is any left in the pack, tuck a couple of sprigs into the sides of the baking tray. Roast for 45-50 minutes until tender.
In the meantime, sweat the celeriac, celery, carrot and onion with olive oil on a low heat until nice and soft. Season well and add the scooped out flesh of the butternut squash.
Add your stock and simmer for 30 minutes, then blend until smooth. Ladle into a bowl and add a swirl of natural yoghurt, a drizzle of olive oil and a good sprinkle of Nigella Seeds – and don’t forget the bread!
For best results, wear a fur cape whilst dishing up and mutter ominously that ‘Winter is coming’ as you place the soup in front of your guest.
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