Butternut squash has been in my basket on and off for a few years. A long time ago, when I first discovered this gorgeous vegetable I would only ever use it for soup or as an accompaniment to a roast dinner. Fast forward to the present day I now roast it, bake it, throw it in salads, add it to curries, and stews, and the kids even love it in pasta sauce!
I’m always happy when the whole family can enjoy the same food and I’m not cooking separate meals. My children have discovered many new foods over the last year allowing their taste buds to experience new flavours. Hopefully this means that adulthood will lead them to explore even more exciting tastes from around the world.
Butternut squash is an excellent source of vitamin A in the form of beta carotene. Its seeds are rich in protein, healthy fats and zinc, making a satisfying snack. Butternut squash is a nutrient-dense food, providing much nutrition in few calories.
Most importantly, don’t throw away the seeds, keep them. Firstly, to prepare squash seeds, remove the stringy bits and then toast them in the oven in a small amount of salty water until the water has evaporated and the seeds are crispy. They are super good for you. Unbelievably, half a cup of these seeds supplies almost a third of the zinc for men and almost half of that for women. Zinc is important for most body processes and structures, and deficiency often leads to reduced immune function so get snacking!
This sauce has added goodness with ginger, and sage, and I make it in a batch and freeze it, using it within a month. For the kids I use it for pasta, but I also use it on gnocchi and on a lamb dish.
- 1 whole butternut squash roasted in the oven for 50 minutes prior to starting to make the sauce, on 190 cover the skin in a teaspoon of coconut oil
- 1 handful of organic parmesan grated
- 1 shallot finely cubed
- 1 garlic grated
- 1 thumb size ginger grated
- 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg powder
- 6 sage leaves
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- 1 good pinch of salt
- Once the butternut squash is done, wait for it to cool off, and then scoop out the flesh, keep the seeds to make a snack later, add soft bits of the skin.
- Heat a frying pan, add the coconut oil, and then add the ginger and garlic on a low to medium heat, and then add the sage leaves for 2/3 minutes. Add the squash and mix, add the nutmeg, and fold it all together. Add salt.
- Once softened and cooled down, add to a blender, but only for 15 seconds just a quick blitz.
- Pour into a bowl and now fold in the parmesan cheese.
- Taste test it to see if it needs some extra seasoning. Its great with spelt spaghetti as well as regular. Have it with a salad on the side.