For me, Fall days means squash is frequently on the menu. Acorn, delicata… they are all delicious and warming. One of my favorite family childhood dinners was butternut squash served alongside sausage patties. The smell of pork sausage frying and the sweet smell of squash roasting are transporting even after many many years.
These days, however, meat, and especially pork, is a rarity, but I still love roasted squash. More often in my cooking these days, squash dishes are found in soups and alongside lentils or beans.
This recipe from the New York Times’ and Great American Baking champ Valery Lomas comes together quite quickly and, with the enhancement of cinnamon and chili powder (and cayenne!), it was a delicious side for some simply baked cod.
Chili- and Cinnamon-Roasted Butternut Squash
- 1 medium butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
- 1½ tsp salt-free chili powder
- Kosher salt
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon (I used Vietnamese Cinnamon)
- ¼ tsp ground cayenne (optional) (IMHO – be bold!)
- Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a shallow baking pan with parchment paper or foil.
- In the baking pan, toss the cubed butternut squash with the olive oil, chili powder, ½ teaspoon salt, cinnamon and cayenne.
- Arrange the butternut squash in a single layer and transfer to the hot oven. (In other words, make sure that the squash is not on top of each other)
- Roast, stirring halfway through, until the butternut squash is tender and can be easily pierced with a fork, and the cubes are browning on the edges and starting to caramelize, 30 to 35 minutes.
- Remove the squash from the oven and let it cool slightly before serving.