Winter Squash Gratin with Fresh Sage and Goat Cheese

My generalized distaste for shopping does not apply to kitchen gadget stores, international groceries, or farmers’ markets.  In those locales, I tend to lose my sense of good judgment.  This was the case last week at the farmers’ market when I spied what can only be described as a gianormous Blue Hubbard squash.  It was The Squash That Ate New York–a weapon-sized squash that could never be concealed–and it was going for a mere five bucks.  Five bucks for all of this squashy goodness.

That, plus the fact that Harrison was there to lug its heft through the market, meant that resistance was futile.  The giant squash has since been hanging out on our kitchen table, mocking me with its heft.  Today, I finally pulled out my trusty chef’s knife and went to work.

The smug-looking gianormous squash

It was something of a workout to get this thing cut up into manageable pieces, and after I had peeled and sliced enough to fill a 9-by-13 inch baking pan for the gratin, I still had about two thirds of the squash left.  I baked those sections, let them cool enough to scoop from the skin, packed them in freezer bags, and stuck them in the freezer for some future soups.  I filled my baking pan full with 1/2 inch thick slices of peeled squash for the gratin.

To make the gratin I sprinkled some chopped fresh sage between the layers of squash, added salt and ground white pepper, then drizzled on some honey and some water.  I covered the pan with foil and baked it for an hour, then covered the squash with a layer of soft bread crumbs,  some local Haystack Mountain goat cheese, parmesan cheese, and a little more sage.  I left this uncovered and put it back in the oven to melt and brown up.

The end result is a little sweet, a little savory, and a whole lot creamy and fabulous.  I think you will like this.

Winter Squash Gratin with Fresh Sage and Goat Cheese
Enough peeled and sliced winter squash to fill a 9-by-13 baking pan
A dozen or so fresh sage leaves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 cups water or vegetable stock
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 cup soft bread crumbs (about 2 slices of bread, crumbled)
6 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and spray your baking pan with cooking spray to coat.  Layer the squash and the freshly chopped sage in the baking pan.  Sprinkle on the salt and white pepper, then drizzle with the honey.  Pour on the water and cover the pan with foil to seal.  Bake for an hour, or until the squash is tender when pierced with the tip of a knife.

Remove the foil and sprinkle the parmesan and bread crumbs evenly over the top of the squash.  Dot the top with the goat cheese and return the pan to the oven, uncovered, for another 15-20 minutes, or until bubbly and golden.  Share with friends, family, and strangers.  This makes a lot.

You may have noticed that Foodie Road Show has become Seasonal and Savory–I made the name change while switching domains, and I believe it more accurately reflects the focus of my recipes.  If you have been following along on Facebook I hope you will fan the new Seasonal and Savory Facebook Page, as Facebook would not allow a name change for the existing page.  Please keep following my cooking adventures!  I love the company.

Thanks for reading,

-Angela

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6 Responses to Winter Squash Gratin with Fresh Sage and Goat Cheese

  1. Curt October 23, 2011 at 12:06 am #

    Squash for life! What a score! This sounds really good with the fresh sage. I just love the smell of sage.

    BTW, I answered your question about a whole duck you asked on my blog.

  2. Angela October 23, 2011 at 1:00 am #

    Thanks Curt! I appreciate the help.

  3. Betsy October 23, 2011 at 2:47 am #

    I made a squash soup with goat cheese rather than cream–really like the combo of tangy goat cheese with sweet squash, so I will have to try this!

  4. kershaw knives November 25, 2011 at 6:52 am #

    In slicing the squash, it's best to use a heavy sharpened chef's knife. You should begin from the bottom, in perfect half, going up.

  5. Deanna Segrave-Daly October 10, 2012 at 11:13 am #

    Hahah – I love that giant squash – what cool coloring! I immediately gravitated towards your post because I did a potato & summer squash goat cheese gratin post this summer. Can’t wait to try yours – congrats on being part of DBF Top 9!

    • Angela October 10, 2012 at 1:23 pm #

      Thanks, Deanna! I will head over and check out your version–sounds like a great combo.

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