|Farmers Market Favorite butternut squash, grows well and goes well with holy basil, sweet red peppers and sweet potato greens, warmed with a light glaze of local honey and a little red pepper pep.|
Butternut squash is in season at the local markets. One favorite way to enjoy it on its own is in a creamy, savory/sweet soup, however it also stands up to the "what grows together goes together" test-- here it is prepared with the addition of sweet red peppers, sweet potato greens, and fresh, seasonal herbs. This dish was demonstrated at the Texas Farmers' Markets in Austin last weekend. It was a BIG hit with both men and women, tots and adults. And a few puppies. Definitely the market staff. It's always so affirming for folks to come back for seconds. (But thirds are pushing it, y'all. Just saying,)
Butternut is a popular winter squash with earthy, slightly sweet orange flesh, and marries well with other vegetables, especially greens, and beans and legumes. It is often used in place of meat to offer heartiness to vegetarian and vegan dishes. One cup of butternut squash is only 63 Kcal, low in fat, sodium and carbohydrates, high in fiber, potassium, and Vitamin A-- yielding close to 300% one's daily requirement!
An additional perk? Kids LOVE this stuff. And if you're keeping it meat-free, it pairs well with soft cheeses, eggs, black beans, brown rice, and raw or braised greens. Consider it for your holiday meals; butternut squash and greens might just knock your standard sugar-laden standards out of the running.
2T grapeseed oil
2 medium- large butternut squash, peeled and cubed
2c +/- sweet red pepper--cored, seeded, sliced to equal about 2 cups
1/2 bunch fresh holy basil, leaves only, chopped (about 1/4-1/2 cup)
1 bunch sweet potato greens, leaves only, rough-chopped
1 +/- tsp crushed red pepper, or favorite hot pepper sauce, to taste
Salt, to taste
Do the Thing
Heat grapeseed oil in medium skillet until shimmering. Add cubed squash, tossing occasionally while cooking over medium-high heat, until edges are slightly browned. Add sweet red peppers, and basil, cooking until wilted, 3-5 minutes. Add honey and your choice of crushed red pepper or hot pepper sauce to skillet, toss with vegetables to coat, reduce heat to medium low. Fold in chopped greens, cover, and cook, stirring just enough to prevent scorching, allowing greens to wilt. Remove from heat. Serve warm.
Serves 4-6 as a side dish.