This dish made its first appearance at our family’s Thanksgiving this year, and it won’t be the last appearance, I daresay! This Squash Gratin is made with butternut and kabocha squash, heavy cream, and topped with breadcrumbs and Gruyere and Parmesan cheese. YUM! Cutting the squashes is a bit of a challenge; you need sturdy knives for this! But all the work was most definitely worth the final result.
This Squash Gratin recipe is courtesy of Food Network Magazine. You can find their recipe HERE. I did not do much to tweak the original recipe. Food Network has mastered the art of flavorful cooking.
Active: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes
First you want to peel and cut your butternut and kabocha squash into 1/2 inch cubes. This kabocha squash is shown below. The kabocha squash was very difficult to cut. I will probably use 2 small butternut squashes next time I make this recipe.
You will then microwave the squash with water until the squash softens. After softening the squash, you will add it to your saucepan, and add more spices along with heavy cream.
Finally, you transfer the gratin to a baking dish. Food Network recommends baking the gratin in an oven-safe skillet; however, I transferred my dish to a 13 x9 glass baking dish and loved the result! Top the gratin with breadcrumbs, parsley, Parmesan and Gruyere cheeses.
After baking, your Squash Gratin will be beautifully golden-brown and smell heavenly.
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium white onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 small butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 small kabocha squash, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes*
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese
*I could only find a large kabocha squash, and I used 1/2 of a large squash. If you want to avoid kabocha altogether, I recommend 2 butternut squashes
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Melt 2 tablespoon of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and thyme, stirring and cooking until onion is soft.
2. While onion cooks, place chopped butternut and kabocha squash in a glass dish with 1 cup of water. Cover squash and microwave on high for 5 minutes and then check. Microwave until squash is very tender when pierced with a fork.
3. Drain the squash and add it to the onion and thyme in the skillet. Add garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes to combine ingredients.
4. Add broth to squash mixture and cook for 5-10 minutes until broth is mostly absorbed into the dish. Add heavy cream and stir ingredients for several minutes, until sauce thickens.
5. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in the microwave and combine with breadcrumbs, parmesan, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Transfer squash mixture in skillet to a greased 13 x 9 glass baking dish. Top squash with breadcrumb mixture from Step 5. Sprinkle Gruyere cheese over the top of the squash gratin. Bake until golden brown, around 30 minutes.
I was excited to try this recipe but was skeptical about the dish after I spent so much time cutting squash during the prep work. I am glad to say all the time spent cutting squash was so worth it. The flavor profile of this dish is fantastic. The sweetness of the squash melds perfectly with the flavor punch from the strong cheeses.