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Perfect Thanksgiving Side: Acorn Squash with Hazelnuts, Parmesan, and Honey

Perfect Thanksgiving Side: Acorn Squash with Hazelnuts, Parmesan, and Honey | Lonny.com
(Ph. © Mark Jordan)
There are plenty of holiday traditions you'll want to uphold once Thanksgiving rolls around, but your menu doesn't have to be one of them. Why not update your family's annual Turkey Day dinner with an inspired side that's an elegant step up from the tired (and, in my opinion, completely gross) string bean casserole?

In his new cookbook, Good Fat Cooking, chef Franklin Becker of New York City's Little Beet creates heart-healthy meals that are wholesome yet satisfying and showcase the best of the season. What better than his comforting take on roasted acorn squash—with its flavorful zings of Parmesan, cayenne, and honey—to grace your holiday table? "Acorn squash is such a forceful presence that you can throw a lot at it and it still shines through," says Becker, who will open Beet Cafe and Cast Iron, also in New York, in the coming months. "The end result is hearty enough to be a one-dish meal and distinct enough to accompany a Sunday roast chicken or a pan-roasted pork chop." Or, perhaps, a hulking turkey just waiting to be carved.

Perfect Thanksgiving Side: Acorn Squash with Hazelnuts, Parmesan, and Honey | Lonny.com

Acorn Squash, Hazelnuts, Parmesan, and Acacia Honey
Serves 4

-- 1 acorn squash, seeded and cut into 8 wedges
-- 1 tablespoon sea salt
-- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
-- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
-- 2 tablespoons acacia honey
-- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
-- ¼ cup blanched hazelnuts, toasted
-- 1 tablespoon parsley leaves
-- juice of 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a baking dish, place the acorn squash flesh side up. Season with the sea salt and cayenne pepper, and then drizzle with the olive oil. Cover with foil. Bake until fork-tender, about 35 minutes. Remove the foil and drizzle the squash with the honey. Bake for 5 minutes. Arrange on a platter and sprinkle with the cheese. Garnish with the hazelnuts and parsley, and drizzle the lemon juice over. Serve warm.

*Reprinted from Good Fat Cooking by Franklin Becker. © 2014 by Franklin Becker. By permission of Rodale Books. Available wherever books are sold.
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