The first freeze came early. Winter is still a few weeks away and yet the season is showing its signs. A cold wind blows the remaining leaves from the trees. Soon the landscape will be grey-brown empty trees speckled with an occasional evergreen. It is time to warm up from the inside as the frosty chill arrives. Winter squash can be comforting, warming, and filling. Baking softens winter squash to be used in so many ways. It is the first step in making skillet buttercup squash with bacon.
Buttercup squash can be tough to cut. It is not quite as hard as butternut squash though. I would compare the density to acorn squash. The most important thing is to have a big, heavy-duty knife. Once you cut through it, the rest is easy. Bake it with a little water until tender. Mash it up and add it to a skillet of onions softened in bacon fat. Stir in crispy bacon and you have a savory side dish that goes splendidly with ham, pork, turkey, and chicken.
My winter squash cooking only recently expanded. I honestly didn’t tackle many of them. My go-to recipes were Baked Acorn Squash and Butternut Squash Soup. Then this year I discovered calabaza and made Candied Pumpkin. It was time to expand again and so I chose butternut. Next up? I’m not sure yet. I’ll have to see what inspires me and go from there.
Which winter squashes do you cook? There are so many varieties available these days. Long ago it seemed only pumpkin, butternut, and acorn squash could be found at regular grocery stores. If you want to know what to cook with many of the varieties, scroll down to find a list and links to recipes by Sunday Supper bloggers. Big thanks to the very talented Heather at girlichef for hosting this Squashin’ Winter event.
- 2 buttercup squash (medium size)
- 6 slices bacon (regular thickness, not thick-cut)
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Cut squashes in half. Scoop out and discard seeds and stringly flesh.
- Place squash halves cut side down in a baking dish (or two baking dishes if needed). Add about ½-inch hot water to the dish(es). Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes.
- Allow squash to cool to room temperature. Scrape out the flesh into a bowl and discard skins. Mash squash thoroughly. You should have about 4 cups of mashed squash.
- Brown bacon in a medium skillet. Use a slotted spoon to transfer bacon to a plate. Pour out most of the bacon fat, leaving only about 1 tablespoon in the skillet.
- Add onion to the skillet and cook over medium heat until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Return cooked bacon to the skillet along with squash, butter, and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Cook until thoroughly heated, stirring occasionally.
Recipe adapted from one in the Southern Living 1985 Annual Recipes cookbook (out of print).
How about more winter squash recipes? Check out these from Sunday Supper bloggers:
Breakfasts and Breads
- Maple Butternut Squash Donuts from Mess Makes Food
- Pumpkin Sweet Rolls from Basic N Delicious
- Vegan Pumpkin Scones with Maple Nutmeg Icing from Killer Bunnies, Inc
Appetizers, Starters, and Condiments
- Butternut Squash and Couscous Patties-Indian Inspired from Soni’s Food
- Pumpkin Hummus with Spiced Lamb from girlichef
- Quick Pumpkin Butter from Shockingly Delicious
Soups, Sandwiches, and Salads
- Black Bean and Butternut Squash Chili from Supper for a Steal
- Black Bean Pumpkin Soup from What Smells So Good?
- Butternut Squash and Bacon Grilled Cheese from Ruffles & Truffles
- Butternut Squash Soup from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Hearty Quinoa Chicken Stew with Butternut Squash from Citronlimette
- Roasted Buttercup Squash and Black Bean Soup (Dairy free) from The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
- Roasted Butternut Squash and Vegetable Soup from Kudos Kitchen By Renee
- Roasted Squash and Mexican Black Bean Salad from Peanut Butter and Peppers
- Roasted Squash and Sesame Noodle Salad from Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
- Butternut Squash and Spinach Quesadillas from The Dinner-Mom
- Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Balsamic Brown Butter from Crazy Foodie Stunts
- Butternut Squash Lasagna from Hip Foodie Mom
- Butternut Squash-Sage Cream Sauce with Sausage Spaghetti from Daily Dish Recipes
- Carnival Squash with Maple Sausage Stuffing from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Chorizo-Stuffed Acorn Squash from Small Wallet Big Appetite
- Butternut Squash with Spicy Wild Rice and Queso Fresco from Vintage Kitchen Notes
- Pumpkin Alfredo from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Pumpkin Enchiladas from La Cocina de Leslie
- Pumpkin Risotto with Bacon, Goat Cheese, and Pecans from The Weekend Gourmet
- Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprout Pizza from Curious Cuisiniere
- Sausage and Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash from The Messy Baker
- Spaghetti Squash in a Creamy Sausage Sauce from Cookin’ Mimi
- Spaghetti Squash Shrimp Scampi from Pescetarian Journal
- Acorn Squash with Cinnamon and Cranberries from Noshing With The Nolands
- Butternut Squash and Apple Crumble from The Wimpy Vegetarian
- Butternut Squash Gratin with Sage Pesto & Gorgonzola from Cupcakes & Kale Chips
- Chorizo and Craisin Stuffed Acorn Squash from Family Foodie
- Parmesan-Roasted Acorn Squash from The Urban Mrs
- Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese from Big Bear’s Wife
- Roasted Butternut Squash with Balsamic Vinegar Honey Butter from Food Lust People Love
- Roasted Butternut Squash with Wilted Kale, Mushrooms and Garlic from Take a Bite Out of Boca
- Skillet Buttercup Squash with Bacon from Magnolia Days
- Slow Cooker Squash and Apples from Mama’s Blissful Bites
- Sweet N Spicy Baked Chipotle Butternut Squash Fries from Sue’s Nutrition Buzz
- Twice Baked Pumpkin Stuffed Sweet Potatoes from Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen
- Butternut Squash Cupcakes with Browned Butter Frosting from Treats & Trinkets
- Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars from Pies and Plots
Wine Pairing Recommendations for Squashin’ Winter #SundaySupper from Enofylz Wine Blog
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