Green Apple and Butternut Squash Casserole
"A delicious and unexpected combination of flavors, this easy to prepare casserole is one of our seasonal favorites. The toasted pecan and breadcrumb topping adds a bit of crunch to the velvety soft texture of baked apples and butternut squash."
* 2 Granny Smith green apples, peeled and cored
* olive oil spray
* 3 TB [vegan] butter, divided
* 2 TB extra virgin olive oil
* 1 small butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
* 1 small yellow onion, chopped
* 1 large stalk celery, chopped
* 2 cups mushrooms, cleaned and cut into quarters
* sea salt to taste
* freshly ground black pepper to taste
* Fresh thyme to taste, optional
* 1/2 cup breadcrumbs [use matzoh meal instead if making for Passover]
* 1/2 cup toasted chopped pecans, optional
Preheat oven to 400°F. Cut apples into quarters and then each quarter into quarters again. Spray a medium baking dish with olive oil cooking spray and set aside. Melt one tablespoon "butter" with the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté squash, onion, celery and mushrooms with a pinch of sea salt for 10 minutes, stirring often. Cover the pan and cook for 5 to 10 minutes over medium-low, stirring occasionally, until squash is just tender.
Meanwhile, melt the remaining two tablespoons of "butter" in a saucepan. Add the breadcrumbs, stirring to coat well and set aside. To the pan with the squash, add the apples, thyme, salt and pepper to taste. Continue to sauté for 5 to 10 more minutes, or until apples are just tender. Transfer vegetables and any pan juices to prepared pan. Sprinkle breadcrumbs over the top. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until breadcrumbs are golden-brown. For extra crunch, garnish with toasted pecans before serving.
Nutrition Info [for the non-vegan version with butter; using margarine probably won't change it that much, aside from eliminating the cholesterol and possibly the sat. fat if you use a healthier one...]
Per Serving (181g-wt.): 260 calories (160 from fat), 18g total fat, 5g saturated fat, 4g protein, 23g total carbohydrate (4g dietary fiber, 7g sugar), 15mg cholesterol, 470mg sodium