Fall means butternut squash!

Fall is usually my favorite time of year. Things usually go better for me in the fall, its far less stressful than the spring, and its when things tend to start – new jobs, school, new friendships, etc. I never really embraced fall foods though, well, with the exception of halloween candy. That is until last year, when I first started this whole “trying a new recipe every week” thing, and fell in love with butternut squash. So I have been looking forward to squash season for a while, and now that its October its finally here!

I decided to make this Butternut Squash and Duxelles Casserole. I generally dislike mushrooms, but they are good in some circumstances, and I was willing to give this recipe a try. I mostly followed the recipe, with one major difference. I didn’t make cheese sauce. Instead, I added a couple cloves of garlic to the mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms in this case, and shallot. Then when compiling the casserole, I added blue cheese where the cheese sauce should be. You have to really like blue cheese in order to do this, but I’ve found it works surprisingly well with butternut squash. Then I added a handful of pine nuts, cause why not? Bake at 350 until its tender (not mushy, just tender, as in, can be cut with the side of a fork).

butternut squash casserole

The recipe turned out delicious. One of those meals where I had a serving. Then I had a bit more, and then another bit more. I think a cheese sauce would make it a bit too heavy, but if you dislike blue cheese, goat cheese or feta would probably work nicely. I paired it with a red wine, a blend from a South African vineyard (the first South African wine I’ve liked actually), partially because fall also means the switch back to red wine and partially because I prefer red with casseroles. The only thing preventing me from making this dish again and again is that I’ll probably forget to buy mushrooms.

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