Eat your squash, it's good for you.

There are plenty of healthy reasons to love butternut squash.

One cup of butternut squash contains nearly three times the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin A, which protects against breast cancer and age-related macular degeneration. Butternut squash has been reported to have anti-inflammatory effects because of its high antioxidant content and it may also reduce the risk of inflammation known to be present in arthritis and asthma.

That same cup of butternut squash provides 3 grams of fiber, 14% of the RDA of potassium which is important for bone health, 49% of the RDA for vitamin C, 14% of magnesium and 11% of vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 helps your immune system, and with the cold and flu season about to start, isn't it a good idea to eat what keeps the sniffles away?

It’s bright orange color signals that butternut squash is full of carotenoids. Carotenoids protect against heart disease and are said to help lower cholesterol. So as you drop those extra yolks into this squash custard recipe, don't worry so much. Just remind yourself that you’re making a dessert with redeeming qualities and way better for you than say, a Napoleon pastry. And the taste? Yummy!

INDIVIDUAL BUTTERNUT CUSTARDS
1 and 1/2 cups cooked butternut squash (canned pumpkin is a fabulous sub)
3 eggs plus 2 extra yolks
1 cup half and half
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
dash of sea salt

Using a cookie sheet, bake one whole medium butternut squash at 350 degrees F until soft, about an hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool just enough to handle, slice squash in half and scoop out flesh, discarding the outer peel and the seeds. Set aside. Lower oven heat to 325 degrees F.

Butter the bottom of six 1/2 cup ramekins or custard cups. Set aside. In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients and puree until smooth. Divide mixture equally among the buttered ramekins and set them in a large roasting pan. Add enough boiling water to come about halfway up the sides of the ramekins and bake in the hot water bath for about 35 to 40 minutes or until the custard is set. You can test with a wooden toothpick, when the toothpick comes out clean the custard is cooked. Set the individual ramekins on a cooling rack after removing them from the water filled pan.

Serve in the ramekins, or if you prefer run a knife around the sides of the ramekins and turn out the custards onto individual dessert plates. Top with a small shortbread cookie or decorative pastry crust cutout and an extra drizzle of maple syrup.

Comments

  1. This sounds so good! Perfect fall dessert. (And pretty too!)

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  2. yumyumyum... reminds of the pumpkin pot du creme recipe you shared with me a few years back :)

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  3. It is similar but I've played around with it a little to make it more my very own. This one also works as pie filling -- very yummy.

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  4. i love the way you follow the seasons and fresh items with your recipes. it is almost like being neighbors and i just peek over the fence or pop in the back door to see what you are up to. real, delicious recipes... and other tidbits. thanks

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  5. I spent the last three days cooking up butternut squash recipes with local gourds: in soups, stews, roasted and caramelized with fresh ginger.....the only thing missing was a dessert course. Thank You, Deb; move over chocolate pot du creme!

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