Family, food, and giving thanks: that’s what it’s all about!
I consider my dining table as the blank canvas: my paint and brush will be all the ingredients of the season. The colors of autumn leaves; the smell of herbs and spices such as sage and cinnamon; the turkey and all the side dishes will orchestrate joy, love and celebration. What a lovely picture!
We have shared with you in the past many of our favorite Thanksgiving recipes for the main bird and all the accompaniments. Today, I wanted to share with you one of my favorite appetizers to start your party with a burst of fall colors and invitation to the main course that will intrigue your guests!
Butternut Squash, Goat Cheese and Sage Crostini!
I love this recipe because you can prepare the ingredients the day before; and minutes prior to your guest’s arrival garnish your crostinis with the colors and flavors of fall. Simply elegant, easy to prepare and a delicious start to Thanksgiving celebrations which is sure to please!
4 cups of small cubes of butternut squash
1 ½ teaspoon of brown sugar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
12 sage leaves
½ cup goat cheese
Zest of one meyer lemon; reserve lemon for juice
12 3/8” thick baguette slices
Extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
In a large bowl, toss squash with a ¼ cup olive oil, brown sugar, cinnamon and desired amount of salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool.
In a small skillet over medium low heat, warm ¼ cup olive oil. Add sage until edges begin to curl and turn dark green (30-40 seconds). Do not allow leaves to turn brown as they will be bitter; also, do not remove from heat to early, as they will not crisp. Remove sage from oil and place on paper towel to drain.
The above two steps can be done the night before. Cover and chill squash and bring to room temperature prior to serving. Store sage leaves in air tight container.
Thirty minutes prior to serving, toast baguette slices in the oven (350 degrees for 6-8 minutes). In a small bowl, mix together lemon zest and cheese. Spread 1 teaspoon of cheese mix on each baguette slice. Top with 1 teaspoon of roasted squash; drizzle with lemon juice and olive oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top crostini with 1 sage leaf.