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As Thanksgiving approaches and you enjoy fall colors, flavors, and weather, turn your attention to this roasted acorn squash recipe from Milk Street. It's got everything: the fall flavors of squash and browned butter, fall colors of orange squash and vinaigrette, and a comforting warmth perfect for fall weather (plus, the heat of the oven can keep your kitchen cozy!).
Roasted Acorn Squash with Browned Butter-Orange Vinaigrette
This elegant, wintry side dish was inspired by a recipe from chef Travis Lett’s Gjelina cookbook. Caramelized roasted squash is finished with a sauce of browned butter, orange juice, and white wine vinegar, the brightness of the acids balancing the richness of the butter. Roasted pistachios lend both texture and vivid color, and their flavor echoes the nuttiness of the browned milk solids in the butter.
To double the recipe, place the oven racks in the upper- and lower-middle positions and roast the squash on two baking sheets. Halfway through cooking, when flipping the squash slices, also switch the position of the baking sheets. The sauce is easily doubled.
Don’t add the parsley or the final 1 tablespoon of cold butter to the sauce until ready to serve. The parsley will darken if added in advance and the last bit of butter ensures the sauce is emulsified.
1 1⁄2- to 2-pound acorn squash, halved lengthwise, seeded and sliced into 1-inch-thick half rings
5 tablespoons salted butter, cut into 1-tablespoon pieces, 1 tablespoon chilled
1⁄3 cup orange juice
1⁄3 cup white wine vinegar
1⁄3 cup salted roasted pistachios, chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1. Heat the oven to 475°F with a rack in the middle position. Line a rimmed baking sheet with kitchen parchment. Place the squash in a large bowl. In a small saucepan over medium, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter. Drizzle 1 tablespoon over the squash; set the pan with the remaining melted butter aside. Season the squash with salt, then toss to coat. Arrange the slices in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet, then roast until browned on both sides and a skewer inserted into a piece meets no resistance, 25 to 30 minutes, flipping the slices once halfway through.
2. Meanwhile, set the pan with the melted butter over medium and cook the butter, swirling occasionally, until golden brown with a nutty aroma, about 3 minutes. Add the orange juice and vinegar, then bring to a boil over medium-high. Cook until reduced by about half, 5 to 6 minutes; adjust the heat as needed to maintain a steady simmer. Taste and season with salt, then set aside until ready to serve.
3. When the squash is done, use a wide metal spatula to transfer the slices to a platter, then sprinkle with pistachios. If the sauce has cooled, rewarm over low, then remove from the heat. Whisk in the 1 tablespoon chilled butter and the parsley until the butter is incorporated. Drizzle the sauce over the squash.