Roasted Italian Butternut Squash

September 29, 2016 Entrees, Menu No Comments

Nothing says autumn like the sweet taste of butternut squash. Whether it’s roasted with a little cinnamon, butter and brown sugar, prepared as a hearty soup, or served as a seasonal ravioli, butternut squash is a definite fall favorite. This recipe offers a nice balance of sweet and savory. The Italian seasonings work really well with the natural sweetness of the squash. This is a great side dish to serve with any autumn-inspired meal…be sure to keep it in mind come Thanksgiving time!

 

 

 

 

Roasted Italian Butternut Squash

I like to slice the top half as rounds, and the bottom half as long slices – this makes it easier to work around the pulp and seeds, and makes for a rustic presentation.

1 butternut squash, peeled and sliced into 1/2″ slices
1/4 cup olive oil, plus additional if needed
1/4 tspn salt
1/4 tspn pepper
1/2 tspn garlic powder
1 tspn Italian seasoning

I personally prefer to use a baking rack sitting in a baking dish or on a baking tray for this recipe, to allow for even cooking on both sides. If you do not have a rack that fits into a baking dish, you can just use a lightly sprayed baking tray and flip the squash slices halfway through baking time.

Preheat oven to 400˚. Place squash slices on a rack that is sitting in a baking dish or on a baking tray (see note above regarding the rack). Combine 1/4 cup olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Lightly brush the squash slices on both sides. You can lightly drizzle with additional olive oil if needed.

Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the slices start to brown along the edges, turning once at 15 minutes.

squash2

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Crab-stuffed Bell Peppers

September 14, 2016 Menu No Comments

When I first started preparing this dish, my intentions were to follow an old recipe of mine, which included mixing diced peppers with the remaining ingredients to make a warm crab salad. I’ve done this before and served it with crackers or over pasta. But the home-grown peppers that I had on hand looked so damn pretty, that I decided instead to stuff and bake the peppers. It was a delicious choice to make! Either method would work well, but if you have a handful of peppers ready to be used, give this stuffed version a try. It is a hearty and tasty dish for sure!

Note – the peppers that I used were mini bells, mini gypsy and sweet reds. You can use whatever variety of pepper you prefer.

 

 

 

Crab-stuffed Bell Peppers

16 oz canned crab claw meat
2 tbspn butter
1 large shallot, chopped
juice of 1 lemon
2 tbspn white wine
6 oz chopped artichoke hearts
1 cup breadcrumbs
olive oil
3 large or 5 small bell peppers, cut in half lengthwise and cleaned
(if you decide to mix the diced peppers with the remaining ingredients, one large bell pepper will be all you need).

Preheat oven to 400˚. Melt butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add chopped shallot, sauté until soft.  Add crab meat, lemon juice, wine and chopped artichoke hearts. Stir. Add 1 cup breadcrumbs plus tablespoon of olive oil. Stir until breadcrumbs are fully incorporated. You can add additional olive oil if needed. Heat until warmed.

Fill each pepper half with the crab filling. Place the peppers on a baking sheet or in a baking dish. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until peppers are tender.

Serve warm.

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