Serves: Makes 4 servings
- 1 acorn squash, about 2½ pounds
- Kosher or sea salt
- 4 teaspoons unsalted butter
- 4 teaspoons maple syrup
- ¼ cup water
Procedures:Easy to make, this classic squash is simple, delicious autumn goodness. Any hard-shelled winter squash can be prepared this way, as long as the squash wedges have a cavity to hold the butter and maple syrup. Serve with pork chops, roast chicken, or roast duck.
Preheat the oven to 375°F. With a cleaver or heavy chef's knife, cut across the top of the squash to remove the stem, then quarter the squash lengthwise and remove the seeds and stringy fibers in the seed cavity.
Put the squash quarters, cavity side up, in a baking dish just large enough to hold them comfortably. Season the squash with salt, then put 1 teaspoon butter and 1 teaspoon maple syrup in each cavity. Pour the water into the baking dish, then cover the dish and bake until the squash is tender when pierced, about 45 minutes.
Pour any juices from the squash cavities into the baking dish, then transfer the squash quarters to a serving platter. Transfer all the juices from the baking dish into a small pan and place over high heat. Cook until reduced to a syrup, then spoon the syrup over the squash. Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. The squash is best when it is not piping hot.