With Thanksgiving in only two days, I’ve been thinking a lot about what I will be contributing to our family dinners this year as I’m sure a lot of you are too! We will be getting together with my husband’s family on Thanksgiving and my mom’s family over the weekend. It’s a busy time of the year with harvest wrapping up, our son’s first birthday and now the start of the holiday season, but it’s great to see all of our family and get to spend some time together. We will actually be going to get our Christmas tree on Sunday with Kevin’s family! I can’t believe it!
For our first Thanksgiving meal, I’m in charge of the vegetable dishes. With two young kids, I usually get the “easier” things. It was requested that I bring a green bean casserole and the family baked corn. These are some of the traditional side dishes that we have every year and they are delicious! I said I might bring a third vegetable and was thinking about switching it up a little bit and taking something completely different, like Sweet and Savory Butternut Squash!
To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever made a butternut squash, but I was very happy with how this recipe turned out! It’s got the savoriness of the bacon, but then the sweetness of the syrup, brown sugar and pomegranates that compliment it well. Pomegranates are one of my favorite fruits, but they are a pain to peel! The other day it took me over 20 minutes to peel two of them, but it was definitely worth it! I peel them over a bowl of water, that way when you drop the seeds into the water, the white membrane will float to the top if you missed a piece.
I hope you all have a happy Thanksgiving and don’t get too stressed out over the next month! Just remember what the season is really all about!
Sweet and Savory Butternut Squash
1 butternut squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
4-5 strips of bacon
2 shallots, finely chopped
3 tablespoons brown sugar
4 tablespoons real maple syrup
4 tablespoons bacon drippings, divided
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/2 cup of pomegranate seeds
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Peel the butternut squash, slice in half and remove the seeds. Cut into 3/4″ cubes. Place in a large baggie.
- Drizzle in the olive oil, seal the baggie and mix the squash around so it’s evenly coated with olive oil.
- Place the squash in a single layer on a large metal baking pan.
- Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes.
- While the squash is baking, cut the bacon into pieces and fry until it’s just starting to crisp. Remove from heat and drain the bacon, saving the bacon drippings.
- Place two tablespoons of bacon drippings back into the same skillet and sauté the shallots until they become translucent, about 3-4 minutes over medium heat.
- Add the brown sugar, maple syrup, two tablespoons of bacon drippings and the cider vinegar to the shallots. Bring to a boil until slightly thickened.
- Remove the squash from the oven and stir it around. Then drizzle the shallot mixture over the top and place back into the oven for another 20 minutes or until the squash has softened.
- Remove from the oven. Transfer to a serving bowl. Stir in the bacon and pomegranate seeds and serve immediately. Enjoy!