Butternut Squash Gratin With Spicy Breadcrumbs
Chef Lynn Bound
Cafe 2 & Terrace 5
3 large butternut squash
2 quarts heavy cream
12 whole eggs
12 egg yolks
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 large Spanish onions, julienned
3 cups coarse grated Parmigiano cheese
2 cups Japanese bread crumbs
¼ cup Ancho chili powder
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise, remove seeds. Lightly oil the flesh side of the squash, place on a baking sheet and roast in a 350 degree oven, until the flesh is soft not mushy. Depending on your oven it could take anywhere from 40 minutes to an hour, but it’s best to check it after 30 minutes.
While the squash is roasting, start caramelizing the onions. This is done by slowly sautéing them in a sauté pan over medium heat. Watch them carefully so as not to burn them.
When squash is finished roasting, let cool. Once it is cool, remove the skin. Place the roasted squash in a food processor and blend until smooth.
Remove the butternut squash from the food processor and place in a large bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the cream, whole eggs, egg yolks, and nutmeg.
Whisk the cream mixture into the cooled butternut squash until smooth and evenly incorporated.
Season with kosher salt and fresh black pepper.
Taste a very small amount for seasoning. Add more nutmeg if you like.
To assemble and bake:
Preheat oven to 325 F.
Spray or lightly butter the ramekins or baking dish and place a small amount of caramelized onions on the bottom evenly. Place a layer of Parmigianino cheese on top of the onions.
Spoon the squash mixture into the ramekins, stopping just before the top.
Using a deep baking pan, place the ramekins inside of the pan.
Pour hot water in the pan ½ way up the ramekins.
Cover the whole pan with aluminum foil.
Place in the oven and bake for about 30-45 minutes, depending on your oven, checking after 20 minutes to see how they are progressing. They are done when the top is a bit firm and pulling away from the sides.
If you are baking them and serving the same day, remove from oven and remove from water bath, using a towel.
Place the cheese the Ancho, and the breadcrumbs on top and place back in to the oven to brown the breadcrumbs and melt the cheese.