Monday, November 12, 2012

Baked Butternut Squash Fries

  Do you know about the girl food code? It's a thing most girls go through when in high school or college, but it always stays in the back of your mind.  It usually goes like this,"I can eat this is I do this many more crunches" or "If I eat this food with this food, they will counteract each other so it's okay" ordering a salad with a side of fries. Well, now you can have your salad with a side of these slightly healthier baked squash fries!
This is the conversation between my dad and I while eating the fries...

My dad: These sweet potato fries taste just as good as white potato fries with ketchup.
Me: They aren't sweet potato fries, they are butternut squash fries.
Dad: SQUASH fries! You fed me squash fries!?
Me: Uh no, you can't go back!  You already said you liked them and you can't take it back because I told you  they were squash. 
Dad: Fine, they are good.We did the same thing when we were traveling in Morocco; we didn't want them to tell us what we were eating and if we liked it, we left it at that.

  Once you taste these delicious, slightly sweet fries you will be hooked!This will be your new favorite side dish/snack recipe which I know I will be making again soon. The recipe below really isn't a recipe, more like a guideline since you can add different spices. Some recipes I have found for butternut squash fries just cut the neck part into fries while leaving the bottom half for roasting or soup while others use the whole thing; depending on how many people you are feeding & the size of your squash you can choose what option to follow.

Baked Butternut Squash Fries

1 butternut squash, any size really
1-2 T vegetable oil *
coarse sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and place a metal cooling/baking rack on the pan.
2. Peel the squash, cut it in half down the center and width-wise so that you have 4 sections. Scoop out the seeds and loose fibers in the end bulbous ends. Cut the squash into thin, even sticks {note: the fries can be wider as long as they are all about the same thickness and will perfect around 35-40 minutes.}
3. In a large zip lock bag {my choice} or bowl, toss the 1 T of oil and fries together {*You want the fries to be lightly coated in oil; not swimming in it}. Lay the fries evenly on the wire rack with some space between each fry before sprinkling with salt.
4.Cook for 35-40 minutes until tender; flipping half way through baking. For a crispier fries, turn on the broiler when the fries are done and let them crisp up, but keep an eye on them so you don't burn the batch.
Sprinkle with extra salt before serving.

Serve plain, with ketchup, an avocado sauce like this, or your favorite dipping sauce.

Question:  Do you have any favorite recipes using squash (different varieties)? We have several types already and will be getting a few more this weekend with our Bountiful Basket haul so I need a few new recipes ideas. Both sweet and savory recipes are welcome. 

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