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Weekend Recipe: Acorn Squash with Brown Sugar

 

Photo courtesy of Cook's Illustrated
Photo courtesy of Cook's Illustrated

This is a truly simple recipe from America's Test Kitchen, but serving the squash as halves looks quite stunning and gives any meal a festive flair. Cheers to autumn!

Acorn Squash with Brown Sugar
Serves 4

2 acorn squash (about 1 ½ pounds each), halved pole to pole and seeded
Salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar

Sprinkle squash halves with salt and place halves cut-sides down in 13- by 9-inch microwave-safe baking dish or arrange halves in large (about 4-quart) microwave-safe bowl so that cut sides face out (see photo). If using Pyrex, add 1/4 cup water to dish or bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap, using multiple sheets, if necessary; with paring knife, poke about 4 steam vents in plastic wrap. Microwave on high power until squash is very tender and offers no resistance when pierced with paring knife, 15 to 25 minutes. Using potholders, remove baking dish or bowl from oven and set on clean, dry surface (avoid damp or cold surfaces).

While squash is cooking, adjust oven rack to uppermost position (about 6 inches from heating element); heat broiler. Melt butter, brown sugar, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in small saucepan over low heat, whisking occasionally, until combined.

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When squash is cooked, carefully pull back plastic wrap from side farthest from you. Using tongs, transfer cooked squash cut-side up to rimmed baking sheet. Spoon portion of butter/sugar mixture onto each squash half. Broil until brown and caramelized, 5 to 8 minutes, rotating baking sheet as necessary and removing squash halves as they are done. Set squash halves on individual plates and serve immediately.

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