Delicata quash is one of my favorite winter vegetables. The versatile nature of this squash allows it to be prepared in so many ways. Delicata squash has a texture and flavor that’s irresistible. For a fall or winter side dish, roast and add to salads or serve with an Aioli sauce for a crowd pleasing meal.
Delicata squash is naturally sweet and easier to prepare than other winter squash. The skin is edible so there’s no peeling needed. This winter squash variety is rich in flavor and the skin caramelizes when roasted on a sheet pan.
Roasting delicata squash in a hot oven brings out the sugar in the flesh and helps to caramelizes the rings. If the slices are thin the squash will cook too quickly and not have time to develop that caramelized crust. Make sure to leave space between the squash rings. If they are too close together, the squash will steam. You will end up with mushy, soft squash rather than a caramelized version. Keeping the slices thicker will allow you to leave them on the pan longer so they can fully caramelize. You will need to remove the delicata squash midway through the cooking process to flip them.
Watch me prepare delicata squash with aioli dip here!
Delicata Squash with Aioli Dip
- 2 Delicata squash
- 6 dried apricots or 4 dates, pits removed and pulled apart into peices
- 4 shallots
- 8-10 green olives, chopped
- salt to taste
- pepper (a few grinds)
- 1 tablespoon of honey is optional
- olive oil for roasting
- Aioli Dip
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place over rack in lower third of your oven.
- Wash and dry Delicata squash. Cut lengthwise, remove seeds, and slice into half rings.
- Slice shallots lengthwise in 1/2 and then in half again.
- Place squash and shallots on a backing sheet. Drizzle a little honey on top if you’d like. Sometimes I feel like this helps with the caramelization process. Don’t overcrowd your baking sheet.
- Drizzle with olive oil, toss, add a few grinds of pepper.
- Roast for about 30 minutes. Remove the squash, add the olives and dates and/or dried apricots, toss and put back in the oven for another ten minutes.
- Prepare Aioli Dip: To one half cup of mayonnaise, add 1 teaspoon Aioli seasoning/powder, 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Add a quarter teaspoon of salt, stir, taste, and add additional seasoning if needed.