Preparing Butternut Squash | Tuesday's Tip of the Day!
I see you over there reaching for the plastic clamshell container of pre-cut butternut squash. It’s ok, your secret is safe with me but only if you give me just a quick second to present my case.
When purchasing pre-cut butternut squash, however convenient it may seem, you are actually doing yourself a disservice as you haven’t the slightest idea when it was peeled or cut and where and how for that matter. Martha Stewart once said, “I will never buy anything that is peeled or pre-cut for me. How do you know when, how and by whom?” With that being said, you just don’t know what your getting yourself into when opting for the pre-cut variety, especially when cutting butternut squash yourself is so easy. Follow these quick steps and you will have perfectly diced butternut squash in a matter of minutes.
1. Lay the butternut squash on its’ side. Trim a thin layer from both the bottom (root or base) and top (stem) resulting in two flat surfaces.
2. Cut across the middle of the squash (right where the thin neck leads to the plump base).
3. Stand each right side up. Similar to removing the peel from a pineapple, use a large knife (chef knife), starting at the top, to carefully trim – or carve – your way down removing the peel. Continue to rotate your knife around the butternut squash working from the top to the bottom, cutting only as deep as the peel for minimal waste. Repeat with the second half.
4. Depending on the desired thickness of your cubed butternut squash, cut the squash into planks. Cut the planks into rectangular batons and then the batons into cubes so that all sides are the same thickness resulting in a perfect cube. The top half is ready to go at this point.
5. For the base, the plump bottom half, use a knife to cut straight down the middle. Using a spoon, scrape away the seeds and cut the butternut squash to your desired size.
And with those 5 simple steps, you are ready to start cook’n! Whether stewing, blending in your favorite fall inspired soup or roasting, knowing how to quickly and efficiently “break down” a butternut squash, removes all barriers allowing more time for cooking and less time chancing the state of pre-cut varieties!
And while we are on the subject of butternut squash, I have some incredible recipes featuring them, like Vegetarian Butternut Squash Chili, Wild Arugula Salad with Butternut Squash, Butternut Pear Soup, Butternut Apple Soup, and Roasted Butternut Squash with Thyme (as pictured above).
For other terrific tips and hundreds of recipes, visit my website (thetabletogether.com). While there, consider “subscribing” and I will send a new tip or blog post directly to your inbox every Tuesday and Wednesday morning!
Cheers to starting a new tradition around The Table Together!
P.S. Coming in the New Year (TBD March 1), I am launching a YouTube channel, The Table Together with Tiffany Lewis, solely dedicated to bringing all of these fantastic tips and recipes to life! And because you are loyal readers, I will let you in on a little secret. There is an entire video dedicated to butternut squash. Stay tuned for more info to come…
Founder and true believer in the power of bringing people around The Table Together!