Butternut Squash Appetizer – Pesto Rounds
This was the first year we did our Thanksgiving Clean eating challenge! If you aren’t familiar with the challenge, readers were asked to submit one of their favorite Thanksgiving recipes that was in need of a make over. In exchange, I would adjust the recipe to make a clean eating compliant recipe. This recipe for Butternut Squash Rounds are the first recipe in the challenge!
The Original Thanksgiving Recipe
When a reader submitted a recipe for Sweet Potato rounds, I was very excited! They sounded delicious and they were relatively simple to make. The reader described these as an alternative to sweet potato casserole. We used to make Sweet Potato Casseroles for Thanksgiving but no one ever ate it! We gave up on different recipes and just eliminated sweet potatoes from the spread.
The original recipe consisted of a slice of sweet potato baked with a melted marshmallow and pecan on top. I love that this would be easy to eat at a party. But with the marshmallow, this dish was in need of a make over.
Butternut Squash Appetizer
This Butternut Squash appetizer recipe uses the same concept as the one originally submitted. I couldn’t come up with a good substitute for the marshmallow so I decided to go a different direction! Rather than sweet, this dish is savory, but still delicious and equally impressive.
The very first step is to toast 1/2 cup of pine nuts in a pan over medium low heat. Toast for about 5 minutes or until browned. Be very careful not to burn the nuts. Place on a plate and cool.
Using a vegetable peeler or knife, peel the butternut squash. Slice the neck of a butternut squash in to rounds. Save the bottom of the butternut squash for a different recipe.
Add a spoonful of pesto to to top of each round and sprinkle with toasted pine nuts and Romano Cheese. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the butternut squash is tender.
Serve as an appetizer or a side dish! These butternut squash rounds are sure to be a hit. I know we couldn’t stop eating them…