Sweet dumpling squash are cute little winter squash that closely resemble acorn squash, but are just a little different. They have the striped skin like delicata, and ridges like an acorn squash, just smaller. They usually appear once or twice in our CSA shares and at farmers’ markets. Prepare them just like you would an acorn squash, which is where we got the inspiration for this recipe!
This recipe is an Emma Frisch favorite – and one her Mom cooked for their family Thanksgivings. It’s super easy, and the only thing we changed was the squash variety. I love the combo of honey and butter, but for a vegan or paleo version coconut oil would work perfectly in place of the butter. The dusting of nutmeg gives it a hint of savory. This is the perfect squash dish for Thanksgiving – you can quickly prep it and then roast while the turkey is cooking.
In my family we always ate squash drenched in brown sugar – although we’ve all moved on to healthier versions! This honey butter version is also a great option if you love sweetened squash, but want to skip the refined sugars. We used a rich local honey made with fall flowers. One quick tip – I love the way the squash looks split down the center vertically like you see here, but I learned the other day that it is much easier to split a sweet dumpling squash down the middle horizontally. Either way works fine, but you might want to switch it up!
Honey-Almond Winter Squash by Emma Frisch
2 small or 1 large winter squash – sweet dumpling or acorn squash recommended
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons ground almonds or coarsely chopped almonds
1/2 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
Preheat the oven to 400°F
Cut the acorn squash in half and remove the seeds. Put the acorn squash in a cast iron skillet or on a baking sheet, open-faced side up. Divide the butter and spread it evenly on each half, including in the center well. Repeat this process for the honey, drizzling evenly over each half. Divide the ground almonds and sprinkle evenly over each half. Grate fresh nutmeg over each half. Put the acorn squash in the oven and roast for 40 minutes, or until a fork slides into the squash easily.