When it comes to creating a standout dish for your Thanksgiving table, look no further than Roasted Delicata Squash With Crispy Onions. This culinary masterpiece combines the earthy, sweet flavor of delicata squash with the satisfying crunch of crispy fried onions, all elevated with vibrant toppings like pomegranate seeds and fresh herbs.
Delicata Squash: The Easy Prep Star
Belonging to the same squash family as butternut, acorn, and spaghetti squash, delicata squash distinguishes itself with its effortless prep. Resembling zucchini in nature, it boasts slender, striped exteriors with edible skin, eliminating the need for peeling. To get it ready for roasting, simply scoop out the seeds from the squash halves and slice them into thin half-moons.
For achieving the perfect golden and crispy texture, spread the cut squash across two baking sheets without using parchment paper. Direct contact with the sheet pan is key to optimal browning.
Elevating the Dish
The roasted delicata squash alone is a delightful vegetarian side dish that can grace any weeknight fall dinner. However, we’ve found a way to take it to the next level. We’ve created a luscious lemony yogurt sauce subtly sweetened with honey (you can swap in maple syrup if that’s what you have).
But what truly sets this dish apart is the crispy fried onions. While store-bought fried onions are crispy out of the package, we kick things up a notch by tossing them in a flavorful garlic and spice mixture and briefly re-toasting them for supreme crunch.
Burst of Color and Texture
To complete this masterpiece, we add a burst of color and brightness with ruby red pomegranate seeds and fresh parsley. However, there’s room for creativity here. Consider experimenting with ingredients like dried cranberries, arugula, or crushed toasted hazelnuts to introduce varying textures and flavors.
The New Thanksgiving Star
With Roasted Delicata Squash With Crispy Onions, your roasted vegetables might just outshine the holiday turkey. It’s a perfect centerpiece that combines the flavors of fall with the vibrant colors of Thanksgiving.
Ingredients (Serves 4)
- 2 medium delicata squash (about 2 lb. total), halved lengthwise
- 1 cup store-bought fried onions
- 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, divided
- 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
- Place racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 400°F (200°C).
- Toss the delicata squash (halved lengthwise, seeds removed, sliced ½" thick) in a bowl with olive oil, garlic powder, and ground cumin. Season generously with kosher salt.
- Arrange the squash slices on two large rimmed baking sheets in a single layer, dividing them evenly.
- Roast the squash, turning them halfway through, until they are tender and golden brown, which takes approximately 35–40 minutes.
- Set the roasted squash aside.
Roasted Delicata Squash With Crispy Onions is not just a side dish; it’s a showstopper that will steal the spotlight on your Thanksgiving table. With its simple preparation and the perfect balance of flavors and textures, this dish is sure to impress your family and friends. Try it this holiday season and elevate your celebration with this delightful culinary creation.
Culinary Adventures with Delicata Squash
Does delicata squash need to be peeled?
You don’t have to peel delicata squash, making it an easy addition to your culinary repertoire. Follow these simple steps for prep:
- Slice It: Begin by slicing the squash in half lengthwise.
- Remove Seeds: Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and any stringy flesh.
- Slice and Serve: Cut the seeded squash halves into thick slices, and you’re ready to use this delicious ingredient. Embrace the simplicity of cooking with delicata squash, skin and all!
Is delicata squash like butternut squash?
Delicata Squash vs. Butternut Squash: What Sets Them Apart
In summary, delicata squash offers a distinct advantage for culinary use. It features a smaller seed cavity with seeds closely clustered, resulting in a larger proportion of edible flesh for cooking. In contrast, butternut squash comes with a larger seed cavity, necessitating seed removal, but the remaining flesh boasts a more concentrated flavor profile. When deciding between these two squash varieties, consider the balance between ease of preparation and flavor concentration to suit your culinary preferences.
What is another name for delicata squash?
Delicata Squash: AKA Peanut Squash, Bohemian Squash, Sweet Potato Squash
Delicata squash, a member of the Cucurbita pepo family, goes by various names. It’s commonly referred to as peanut squash, Bohemian squash, or sweet potato squash. These alternative names reflect its versatility and unique characteristics in the world of squash varieties.
Why is it called delicata squash?
The Origin of "Delicata": In Its Skin
Delicata squash earns its name from the distinctive feature of having thin, delicate skin. This skin sets it apart from other winter squashes, as it’s not only easy to cut but also tender and entirely edible, a rarity in the world of winter squashes. Notably, the skin contributes a subtle nutty flavor, adding to the squash’s appeal. When roasted, delicata squash can be creatively stuffed with a delectable mixture of nuts and cheese for a delightful culinary experience.
Can you eat delicata squash skin roasted?
Delicata Squash Skin: Roast It, Don’t Peel It
For squashes like delicata, acorn, and honeynut, keeping the skin intact is a smart choice. It not only saves you time but also maximizes nutrient retention and reduces food waste. These squash varieties boast thin skins that readily soften during cooking, making them perfectly edible. So, the next time you’re preparing delicata squash for roasting, there’s no need to peel it – embrace the added convenience and nutrition of the skin.
Why is my delicata squash bitter?
Understanding Bitterness in Delicata Squash
The bitterness in delicata squash is directly linked to the levels of cucurbitacin. The higher these levels, the more pronounced the bitter taste. Environmental stress factors, such as significant temperature fluctuations or irregular irrigation, are the primary culprits behind the increased cucurbitacin concentration within the fruit. To enjoy a sweeter and less bitter delicata squash, maintaining stable environmental conditions during growth is key.