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Monday, January 18, 2010

Pecan Crusted Acorn Squash

I have never been a huge fan of winter squash. Pumpkin pie or bread, sure... roasting an acorn squash for dinner? Not so much. But, it had been a while and so I figured it was time to revisit a flavor I had neglected for a while. Tastes change, after all.

I bought this little acorn squash weeks and weeks ago. That's one of the joys of winter squash. They're such good keepers! I finally decided the other night to give this one a go. It was the same night I made my candied pecans and I had some broken pecan pieces lying around. A natural progression of butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon ensued. A little lemon zest perked it up.

You know what? I've decided I'm still not a big fan of winter squash, but I ate this one anyway; it was that good with those little crunchy pecan bits and sweet/tart/spice. If you actually like winter squash, then I think you'll really love this preparation!

Pecan Crusted Acorn Squash
Yield: 2-4 servings

1 acorn squash, halved and cleaned
1 TBS room temperature butter
3 TBS brown sugar
2 TBS pecan pieces, chopped
1/4 tsp lemon zest
dash cinnamon
fresh ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare a rimmed baking pan with foil. Cut the squash in half along its equator and scoop out the seeds and goop. Place cut side up on the foil.

In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients together and stir together to make a crumbly mixture. Sprinkle over and in the squash halves. Cover loosely with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking another 10-20 minutes, until the squash is tender and the topping is caramelized and the nuts are browned and crunchy. Cool slightly before serving.

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