Recently I’ve started to see the occasional hint of spring in the air. It was sunny for about a day before the clouds returned. I’ve actually been outside without wearing gloves on one or two occasions! And although I’ve had a cold and zero voice for the last week, I’m just beginning to feel myself getting better. But before spring officially arrives in a couple of weeks, I thought I’d squeeze out one or two more wintery recipes. I don’t think I’ll ever stop complaining about winter, but at least I can try and enjoy winter squash while it’s still around.
Chopping and peeling a butternut squash has got to be one of my least favourite jobs in the kitchen. I’m a bit of a weakling, and spending five minutes trying to free my knife from the middle of a rock-hard squash isn’t particularly my idea of fun. However, I always succeed in the end, and once it’s all cooked up, the frustration is forgotten and I realise it was totally worth it (sort of how I imagine giving birth? Um… no, not comparable? Okay then). It’s even more worth it when said squash is roasted topped with a tomato and goat’s cheese flavour crumb. Oh holy wow.
Once the damn squash was cut up, this was actually really quick to put together – just top with some tomato garlic breadcrumbs and goat’s cheese, and stick it in the oven. I bet you could even buy pre-cut squash if you really want to save time (I’ve only ever seen it pre-cut into cubes, not wedges, but it’d still work).
The goat’s cheese goes nice and melty, which helps the breadcrumbs to stick to the squash. You’re left with soft, sweet squash and a crispy, cheesy topping – plus lots of overspill left on the baking tray to spoon on top. Delish.
- 1 medium butternut squash (you only need the lower half – keep the top part for another use)
- 1 slice bread (I used a seeded wholemeal bread, but any should work)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2tsp tomato purée
- 75g hard goat’s cheese
- Spray oil
- Preheat the oven to 190°C (Gas Mark 5 / 375°F).
- Peel the lower half of the butternut squash, remove the seeds, and cut into narrow wedges. Lay out on a baking sheet that’s been lightly spritzed with oil.
- Place the bread and garlic in a food processor, and pulse into fine crumbs. Add the tomato purée, and pulse briefly to combine. Transfer the mixture to a bowl.
- Add the hard goat’s cheese to the food processor (there’s no need to clean it beforehand), and pulse to form a coarse crumb. Add this to the breadcrumb mixture, and mix well.
- Spoon the crumb topping onto the squash wedges. It won’t stick too well, but that will improve during cooking as the cheese melts. Don’t worry if some of the topping falls off onto the baking sheet, as it can simply be spooned over the squash when serving.
- Roast for around 30 minutes. Check it after twenty minutes or so, as ovens vary greatly. After twenty minutes, I turned my oven down a little for the remaining ten minutes, as the breadcrumbs were nice and crispy but the squash was still just a little hard.