This delicious dish is comfort food defined – easy, tasty, and fills the house with good smells. The creamy texture of the squash is the perfect foundation for the warming cinnamon, and the surprise addition of apple makes this feel like a treat. Don’t skip the parsley – it brings it all together. This makes a great vegetarian entree, or you can add ground lamb or beef to make a heartier version.
Ingredients Serves 6
- 1 whole butternut squash – peeled, seeded and cubed in 1-inch pieces – about 3-4 cups (or purchase bag of prepared squash)
- 2-3 firm apples, cored and chopped in 1-inch pieces
- 1 pound ground lamb or beef (optional)
- ½ yellow onion, diced (optional)
- 1 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoons coconut oil or ghee, divided
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
- 1 teaspoon mineral-rich salt (like pink Himalayan salt or “Real salt” brand)
- ½ cup parsley, diced
- Preheat over to 400 degrees F. Grease a 13×9” baking pan with coconut oil.
- In a large mixing bowl, add butternut squash and apple cubes.
- If using onions: In a frying pan, heat 1 tsp coconut oil over medium heat. Add diced onion and sauté until translucent – about 3-5 minutes.
- If using meat: To the frying pan, add ground meat and break into small piece with a spoon. Sauté until evenly browned. Add to bowl with squash.
- Heat 1 Tablespoon oil in frying pan until shimmering. Add cumin seeds and sauté until aroma is released – about 1-2 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder and turmeric, and sauté for 30 seconds more. Pour oil and spices over squash mixture and stir until well-coated. Sprinkle salt over squash and stir again.
- Pour squash into greased baking pan, and cover securely with tin foil so moisture won’t escape. Bake for about 40-50 minutes, or until squash is tender when pierced with a fork.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle with remaining 1 teaspoon cinnamon and chopped parsley. Add salt to taste, if desired.