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The best things about butternut squash are that it is plentiful in the fall, it is inexpensive, it lasts for months if properly stored, and it’s almost insanely adaptable. In spite of its versatility, the overly enthusiastic cook who either grew or purchased a lot of butternut squash when it became available as one of autumn’s final offerings might need unusual ways to use up the surplus. There are a number of different types of squash sauces, such as cashew cream, butternut sage sauce for rice, and butternut squash pasta sauce that will help even the most squash-laden cook handle the overflow.
A nutty, naturally sweet butternut squash sauce is easily composed from heavy cream and a little hard-grating cheese, such as Romano or Parmesan, along with roasted squash. Minced garlic and diced onion that have been sautéed until they are translucent ratchet up the flavor. This sauce is incredibly easy to prepare because all ingredients mix up at once in the blender. This healthy, golden orange sauce not only tastes like a dream, but it works well with fish or chicken and can also be used to top grains such as barley or rice.
As delicious as it is, this version of butternut squash sauce is anything but low calorie. Calories, as well as cholesterol, can easily be trimmed by substituting milk for the cream. Another alternative is to replace the heavy cream with 1% or low-fat milk along with just a bit of low-fat cream cheese.
The lactose intolerant as well as vegans appreciate the same sauce made with almond milk. This healthier version also adds protein in the form of raw cashews that have been soaked for an hour or so instead of the cheese. For those who like the taste, nutritional yeast adds a nutty note.
A very different butternut squash sauce that is delectable with pasta requires chicken broth, fresh sage leaves, and shallots. A little olive oil keeps this pureed sauce velvety smooth. The flavor surprises are a dash of nutmeg to bring out the squash’s sweeter personality and chopped, roasted chestnuts. This sauce is perfect atop cheese ravioli and sprinkled with grated cheese.
Yet another simple and delectable butternut squash recipe begins with a head of garlic that has been roasted until the cloves are soft and aromatic. This version works well with sage, and creative cooks can experiment with curry powder or paste as well. Chicken or veggie broth, cooked kale and cream, and milk or almond milk provide the liquid base. This butternut squash sauce is perfect on hearty pasta such as rigatoni.
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