Baked butternut squash, ricotta and spinach
- November 2014
- Serves 4
- Hands-on time 20 min, oven time 1 hour 20-55 min
The combination of creamy ricotta and sweet butternut squash makes for a truly comforting vegetarian main course.
- 27.6g (13.2g saturated)
- 27.4g (15.8g sugars)
- 1 large butternut squash (about 1.2kg), halved lengthways
- ½ tsp caraway seeds, plus extra for sprinkling
- ½ tsp crushed red chillies
- 4 garlic cloves, unpeeled
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 100g baby spinach
- 500g ricotta
- 4 tbsp grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), plus extra to serve
- 1 medium free-range egg, plus an extra yolk
- Bunch fresh sage leaves
- Heat the oven to 200°C/fan180°C/ gas 6. Scoop out and discard the seeds from the squash. Sit the squash halves cut-side up in a roasting tin. Score the flesh in a crosshatch pattern with a knife and season. Scatter over the caraway seeds, chillies and whole garlic cloves, then drizzle with olive oil. Cover with foil and roast for 1-1½ hours until soft.
- Set the garlic cloves aside, then scoop all but 2 tbsp of the squash flesh into a bowl, keeping it in pieces. Gently stir through the spinach and season, then leave to cool.
- Squeeze the garlic cloves out of their skins into a large bowl and mash into the remaining 2 tbsp squash using a fork. Add the ricotta, parmesan and some seasoning. Add the whole egg and extra yolk, stir well, then gently stir through the spinach and squash mixture.
- Spoon into 4 x 200g individual gratin dishes. Top with the parmesan, scatter with extra caraway seeds and the sage leaves, then bake for 20-25 minutes until golden. Serve immediately.
Follow the recipe up to the end of step 2, then spoon into a freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month. Squeeze the roasted garlic cloves out of their skins, as in step 3, then freeze in another bag. Defrost, then finish the recipe.
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