96°F
weather icon Clear

Divas on a Dime: Hasselback makes humble squash Thanksgiving star

Do you want to give the inexpensive unassuming butternut squash a sophisticated glamorous makeover? Do this.

Hasselback is a popular technique of preparing a potato or other similar vegetable by cutting a bit more than halfway through, like a fan. Then butter, herbs, spices, breadcrumbs and/or nuts are added between the slices and baked.

In this recipe, I’ve taken a butternut squash and sliced it à la Hasselbacken, then covered it in a golden caramelized glaze inspired by the flavors of honey mustard. Then I topped it with glazed pecans for amazing crunch and dried cranberries for little flavor bombs of tartness. The result is a squash that’s a harmonious fusion of sweet and savory, crunch and chew, butter and zing. And it’s gorgeous! It’s all the things!

I mentioned honey mustard was my inspiration for this glaze. I used brown sugar and Dijon mustard rather than honey or honey mustard to keep costs down and it’s wonderful. It’s not overpowering nor is it sticky sweet. This makes it play well with other foods and perfect for the Thanksgiving table.

GLAZED HASSELBACK BUTTERNUT SQUASH

Yield: 8 to 10 side servings

What You’ll Need:

1 (3 to 4 pound) butternut squash

1 tablespoon olive oil

Kosher salt and black pepper

½ cup butter – room temperature

½ cup brown sugar + 1 tablespoon – divided

½ teaspoon kosher salt

3 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

½ cup pecan halves

¼ cup dried cranberries

Here’s How:

Preheat oven to 400°F degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Peel, halve lengthwise and remove the seeds from your squash. Rub the squash all over with oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Place cut side down on the baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes to soften. Prepare the glaze while the squash bakes. Combine softened butter, ½ cup brown sugar and salt. Add the mustard and stir. Add the vinegar and stir once more. Place in the fridge until ready to use.

After 20 minutes, remove squash from the oven and let cool enough to touch. Move each half to a cutting board and place a wooden spoon, or similar utensil on either side of the squash to act as a guard as you cut to ensure you don’t cut all the way through. Using a sharp knife, carefully cut thin, vertical crosswise slices in the squash, about 1/8 inch apart; being careful not to cut fully through the squash. Return squash to the baking sheet, flat side down, and schmear about a quarter of the butter mixture onto each half, getting some between the slices. Bake for 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and schmear the rest of the butter mixture divided between the two halves. Bake 20 more minutes.

Remove from the oven. Baste some of the melted butter in the pan over the squash and sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon brown sugar evenly over squash. Add the pecans to the pan, coating them with the melted butter mixture. Bake an additional 10 minutes for a total of 70 minutes cooking time.

To serve, carefully transfer squash to a serving dish, top with pecans and cranberries. Admire the beauty of your stunning dish.

If you don’t want to go to the hassle of Hasselback, just cube the squash and add the glaze as you roast in a 400°F degree oven, adding the toppings before you serve. It’ll still taste delicious with just the amazing glaze. Amazing glaze, how sweet the sauce. That saved a squash-like thee. And I’ve decided the plural of squash should be squish. Let’s make it happen.

Lifestyle expert Patti Diamond is the recipe developer and food writer of the website “Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous!” Visit Patti at www.divasonadime.com and join the conversation on Facebook at DivasOnADimeDotCom. Email Patti at divapatti@divasonadime.com

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
DIVAS ON A DIME: Spoil dad with gourmet hamburgers at home

With Father’s Day just around the corner, may I suggest giving dear old dad what he really wants, an amazing hamburger. Seriously, who doesn’t love a big, tender, juicy burger? Except for a few vegetarians, every dad I know would agree.

California lottery

No one matched all five numbers and the mega number in the Saturday, June 12 drawing of the California Super Lotto. The next jackpot will be at least $55 million.

DIVAS ON A DIME: Start grilling season with a twist on burnt ends

Memorial Day weekend fills my heart with gratitude as we honor those who made possible, the freedom we so often take for granted. It’s a weekend of recognition, remembrance, and thanks. For many families, this weekend also signals the official beginning of grilling season. Care to join me in a patriotic foodie-licious happy dance?

DIVAS ON A DIME: Celebrate strawberries and cream with a vintage cake recipe

Each year on May 21st we celebrate a dessert that just squeals Spring! National Strawberries and Cream Day brings together two favorites, fresh ripe strawberries, and homemade whipped cream. While that alone makes a divine dessert, let’s add a mildly sweet, vanilla fragranced, easy to make from scratch cake and we’ve just won at life.

DIVAS ON A DIME: Meet the underrated and versatile baked potato

Remember baked potatoes? I was chatting with friends about food (because what else do I talk about?) and none of us could remember the last time we had stuffed baked potatoes for dinner. We’ve been so busy with our quinoa we forgot about the King of Carbs. Good carbs, naturally.

Make Mother a sandwich that she will never forget

Meet smörgåstårta, your new favorite party recipe. Smörgåstårta (pronounced SMORE-gas-TOR-ta) is simply a beautifully decorated savory sandwich cake. It’s popular when celebrating special occasions in Sweden. To celebrate Mother’s Day and honor the influential women in your life, may I suggest serving a smörgåstårta?

DIVAS ON A DIME: Easy pork carnitas are perfect for Cinco de Mayo

Melt-in-your-mouth, flavorful and juicy with irresistible caramelized crunchy bits, this pork carnitas is brimming with classic flavors like Mexican oregano, cumin, chili powder and a surprising bright note of citrus. I’m so excited to share this divine recipe, just in time for Cinco de Mayo.

California Lottery

No one matched all five numbers and the mega number in the Saturday, March 20 drawing of the California Super Lotto. The next jackpot will be at least $31 million.

DIVAS ON A DIME: Secret tips for hiding vegetables from picky eaters

Even the most enthusiastic vegetable lovers can have a hard time getting that five a day. But when you have kids who act like you’re trying to poison them with peas, it’s even harder. That said, I’m not above suggesting you sneak veggies into your children’s food. Welcome to this episode of Crouching Mother, Hidden Veggies.