Roasting butternut squash brings out its inherent sweetness by lightly caramelizing it. I’ve served the roasted squash as is with a drizzle of balsamic syrup or a sprinkling of fresh herbs atop, but in this recipe, I decided to mash it up with a few herbs to bring the flavors together.
I like to use a potato masher for a coarse mashed texture. You can also use your hand blender or food processor, which will give you a smoother result.
Cumin and sage add a layer of flavor that enhances the squash. This is a colorful side dish that complements most poultry and lamb. It is, of course, a happy add-on to any holiday table as well.
You can now find peeled and cut-up squash at most markets to make this seriously simple. If you can’t find them prepared, you can look for a 3-pound butternut squash and carefully peel it with either a sharp knife or a serrated peeler. Scoop out the seeds and cut it into small pieces.
Roasted Butternut Squash Mash
Serves 4 to 6
- 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Black pepper
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh sage
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Spoon squash onto a baking sheet with a lip and add olive oil, salt, and pepper, tossing to evenly coat. Spread the squash out into a single layer.
Roast for about 35 to 40 minutes, stirring twice, until lightly caramelized.
Remove baking sheet from oven and transfer the squash into a large bowl. With a potato masher, mash the squash until smooth. Add the sage and cumin and mix to combine. Taste for seasoning. Serve immediately.
Advance Preparation: This dish may be prepared up to one day ahead, covered, and refrigerated. Reheat gently on medium heat. Adjust the seasonings, if needed.