A few years ago, I decided our Thanksgiving menu had too many side dishes that were sweet. We really needed a savory dish to balance a menu filled with cranberries and sweet potatoes. After a quick search, I found this Butternut Squash Gratin from Food & Wine magazine. The savoy flavors of the dish were such a hit we now serve it every year.
- 6 large poblano peppers (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 2 large butternut squash (4 pounds total) peeled, seeded, halved and sliced into "half moons"
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1 1/2 tsps of thyme, chopped
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced thinly
- 3 large garlic cloves, diced
- 1 tsp oregano, chopped
- 1/2 cup of heavy cream
- 3/4 cup of sour cream
- 8 ounces of Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
- 8 ounces of queso fresco cheese
- Preheat broiler. Place poblanos on a baking sheet and place under broiler, rotate peppers until they are evenly charred. Transfer to a glass bowl, cover with a dish towel and let them cool. When cool enough to handle, remove the peel, stem, and seeds. Roughly chop the peppers into thin strips
- Adjust the oven temperature to 425 degrees. Toss butternut squash with olive oil, salt and pepper, and 1 teaspoon of thyme. Spread onto 2 baking sheets and roast until the squash is tender. About 25 minutes
- Meanwhile, in a large, deep skillet heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the sliced onion, garlic, oregano, thyme. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft.
- Add the poblano strips and cook until tender.
- Add the heavy cream and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes
- Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream and season with salt and pepper
- Spoon half of the poblano mixture into a large baking dish, layer with half of the roasted squash, and half of the cheese. Repeat with the remaining poblano mixture, squash, and cheese
- Bake for 30 minutes until the cheese is browning and bubbling. Allow the gratin to rest for 10 minutes
You can make the unbaked dish one day ahead to save some time. Just keep in the fridge and bring it to room temperature before baking.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!!