I cannot believe I waited so long to start cooking with butternut squash. What was I thinking?
I start out prepping a few butternut squashes over the weekend so my weeknight dinners are easier to get going. For this recipe, I used 1/2 squash.
To prep butternut squash:
Wash and pat dry.
Cut in half lengthwise, scoop seeds
Drizzle small amount of oil over the inside, no need to season at this point.
Lay on rack in a roasting pan
Pour 1 cup water in pan
Bake on 350 for 1.5 hours
Scoop out the delicious squash
At this point you can toss in a food processor for a smoother finish, or just store in zip lock or Tupperware for use throughout the week.
You can freeze, too, if you wish.
Butternut Squash Chili:
1 lb ground meat (turkey, chicken, beef, chuck, pork– your choice!)
1 can black beans, washed and drained
2 cups hot water
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 T chili powder
1 t cumin
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
1/2 t nutmeg
1 ancho chili in adobo (seeded if you want to reduce heat), diced or processed. (You can blend with the 2 C hot water if you’re worried about chunks)
2 cloves garlic, crushed, minced, or diced
I prefer to cook my onions on medium-high heat, stirring almost constantly, in a bit of oil. I treat my carrots the same. The constant movement keeps them from sticking or burning, but it is less time for me to spend standing over the stove.
Turn down to medium heat and add in garlic, allow to cook a couple of minutes until it is aromatic. Remove veggies from pan.
Turn heat back up, immediately add your meat of choice, breaking it apart carefully. Allow to sear, then flip meat chunks and sear other side. Bring heat back to medium, and thoroughly brown the meat. Drain meat (if necessary), set aside.
Return pan to heat, add butternut squash, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Heat the mixture, using spoon to break up and mash any larger chunks of squash. Add in ancho chile and 2 cups hot water, stir carefully.
Add carrot/onion/garlic mix back to pot, mix into squash. Add black beans and meat. Stir, then allow to come to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer at least 20 minutes. I let mine simmer for 45, and it was delicious!
Serve over rice, pasta, or with a nice crusty bread. I also like to serve with a dab of Mexican Cream, which is similar to sour cream but more delicious.
We served ours over Butternut Squash Mexican-Style Rice. Yum!