I cannot express just how excited I am to tell you about this recipe. My only hope is that I can truly convey to you just how freakin’ amazing it is! I can’t say I’ve ever had butternut squash in a dessert. That is, until now. In fact, I don’t even like butternut squash. I want to though. Recently I’ve been putting butternut squash into everything and trying it different ways in an effort to try to like it because it’s so good for you. I also would really like it if Maddy would eat it. I think I am the mother of the only preschooler that doesn’t like macaroni and cheese. I made Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese that was out of this world but she wouldn’t eat it. I, on the other hand was surprised by just how much I liked it. But even after that experience, I still couldn’t say I was completely sold on butternut squash.
Then I started seeing butternut squash pies, prepared much like a pumpkin pie or sweet potato pie so I filed that in the back on my brain for future reference. While my mind was pondered this veggie in pie form (I guess technically speaking, squash is a fruit since it has seeds and all. Right?) I started rolling down a path which led me to tarts. What about a butternut squash tart? So I ran with it. First I roasted slices of the butternut squash. Next I caramelized some cinnamon-kissed brown sugar and laid the lovely roasted squash slices in this spiced sugary bed. Then I covered them with a blanket of buttery puff pastry and tucked them into the warmth of the oven. What emerged was a little sweet, a little savory. In a word, perfection. This officially makes me a true fan of butternut squash.
This will be gracing our Thanksgiving dessert table this week. I am so thankful to be spending this holiday together with my family, that neither Mike nor I are working. I’m thankful that each of our family members are healthy and well, especially in light of Hurricane Sandy last month. I’m thankful for each of my 3 daughters who make every day worth getting out of bed, even if they make me do that at the crack of dawn. I’m thankful for my incredible husband who truly is my partner and friend, biggest cheerleader and supporter, and the love of my life. I am so incredibly blessed. I hope that you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Enjoy your family, friends and of course, the food!
One Year Ago: Toffee Apple Bars
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Roasted butternut squash atop a bed of cinnamon-kissed brown sugar caramel and puff pastry with a dollop of nutmeg whipped cream.
- 1 butternut squash, peeled, halved, seeded and sliced crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt + a pinch more
- 1/3 cup butter
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, divided
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 sheet of frozen puff pastry, thawed
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Toss the squash slices in olive oil. Arrange the slices on the baking sheet and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Roast until tender and lightly browned, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
- In a 12-inch cast iron skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the brown sugar, salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and cinnamon. Cook about 5-7 minutes, swirling the skillet (don't stir!) until thickened and bubbly, being careful not to burn the sugar.
- Remove the caramel from heat and arrange the roasted butternut squash slices in a circle around the pan, working from the inside out.
- Unfold the puff pastry over the squash slices, push any excess pastry down the sides of the pan and tuck under. Using a fork, prick the puff pastry all over.
- Bake for 30 minutes until top is well browned. Let skillet cool for 5 minutes, then gently invert onto a serving plate.
- In a chilled mixing bowl, combine the heavy cream with the 1 tablespoon granulated sugar and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form.
- Serve tarte tatin warm with a dollop of nutmeg whipped cream.