If you live in Idaho, there is rarely a meal that doesn’t have meat and potatoes. It is kind of un-American if we don’t.
Tofu is a swear word and corn is considered the vegetable of choice.
However, I grew up in a family that tried and loved all kinds of foods. Our family meals were well-rounded and still usually included meat, potatoes and a vegetable, but we often had unique ingredients that made those traditional favorites a bit untraditional. I still cook like most of my country neighbors with meat, starch and veggies, but I enjoy mixing it up just a bit with a perfect side dish for just about any main dish.
My acorn squash is a versatile dish. It can be made sweet or savory, and sometimes I will do one of each and then divide them up. This squash is usually available year-round and has a mild and nutty flavor that is perfect when married with a steak, fish, even a casserole.
Acorn squash may seem a bit intimidating in the store, with their tough outer rind and unique shape, but they are simple to make and can be substituted for potatoes or a vegetable.
Belle’s Acorn Squash
- 1 acorn squash, cut in half and seeds removed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar (or 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning and 1 teaspoon garlic salt)
Place squash, cut side down, on a microwave-safe plate. Cook on high for about 9-10 minutes. Remove and place in a baking dis,h cut side up. Place 1 tablespoon butter in each squash cavity, and then sprinkle with either the brown sugar or with the Italian seasoning and garlic salt.
Place under broiler for about 4 minutes or until butter melts and squash starts to brown.
Brenda Stanley is the mother of five children, including two sets of twins, and a grandmother of three. She is a cookbook author and novelist. For more recipes and information, visit her website www.talesofthedinnerbelle.com.