Butternut Squash Custard

Thanksgiving week is here! There is so much to be excited for this week. First and foremost, the cooking. For once spending hours in the kitchen for multiple days in a row is perfectly normal. Secondly, the company. This will be the first Thanksgiving in many years that I’ll actually spend with my brother and sister in law. Plus, extra bonus, The Tibble’s are coming down from Davis with baby Max! I love a baby’s first Thanksgiving.  I’m pretty sure between the new turkey cooking plan I’m busting out, and the newly heated shanty town in our backyard (details to come post holiday), this is bound to be the best Thanksgiving ever.

For those who are still looking for holiday recipe inspiration, may I suggest a butternut squash custard. Holy moly was this stuff delicious! This was one of the squash ideas Grandma gave me when we were visiting a few weeks ago. She told me she doesn’t like pumpkin because it has too strong of a flavor. I had never really thought of pumpkin and butternut squash being an equal substitute for one another, but it totally worked! The texture of the custard was absolutely perfect, and I’m now considering a squash pie for Thanksgiving over pumpkin……I never thought I’d utter those words.

Butternut Squash Custard

1 butternut squash, halved and seeded

1 cup heavy cream

3/4 cup milk

1/2 pure maple syrup

6 large egg yolks

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp salt

hot water

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place squash on a roasting pan and cook 35-45 minutes until soft. Scoop the flesh from the squash into a food processor, and process until smooth. 

Place the oven rack in the middle position and reduce heat to 325°F  Butter or spray 6 ramekins.

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the cream, milk, syrup and 1/2 cup pureed squash. Save remaining squash for another use. Heat mixture until just until barely simmering.

Meanwhile, In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Pour the squash mixture very slowly into the yolks, whisking constantly. Pour the custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a large measuring cup, pressing the liquid out of the solid.
Place the prepared ramekins in a pan with high sides, and pour the strained mixture into the ramekins.

Set the pan on the oven rack. Carefully add enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins.  Bake the custards for 40-45  minutes, or until set and a knife inserted near the edge comes out clean. 

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