Tarte Tatin of Butternut & Acorn Squash with Caramelized Onion


What is not improved by puff pastry and cheese? This heady blend of caramelized onion and two different winter squashes laced with fresh sage is delicious on its own, but when served as a tarte tatin, it achieves new heights.  Served with a hearty salad, this makes a great meal.  This was one of the recipes we featured for our October 23, 2013 Brookside Gardens class.

½ lb. butternut squash, peeled and cubed
½ lb. acorn squash, peeled and cubed
2 T olive oil
1 T butter
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced in half-moons
1 t sea salt
¼ t cayenne, or to taste (optional)
¾ C Fontina OR Gouda cheese (about 2½ ounces), grated or cut into small bits
1½  t chopped fresh sage leaves
1 package puff pastry sheets (Pepperidge Farm), thawed in the refrigerator overnight
1 egg white (or 1 egg, beaten)

Prepare squash: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Peel squash, then halve and scoop out seeds. Cut into a ½-inch dice. Toss pieces with olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and roast on foil lined sheet for about 15-20 minutes or until pieces are beginning to soften but not very tender. Set aside to cool slightly.

Caramelize onions: While squash is roasting, melt butter in a heavy skillet and cook onion over low heat with a pinch of salt, stirring occasionally, until soft and lightly golden brown, about 20 minutes. Stir in cayenne.

Raise the oven temperature to 400 degrees. Mix squash, caramelized onions, cheese and herbs together in a bowl. Transfer the mixture to an oven-proof baking dish, round or square.

Remove 1 sheet of puff pastry from the box and roll into the size of your baking dish. Transfer the puff pastry on to the squash, pressing the dough gently on to the mixture so it adheres. Brush the dough with egg white. Bake until golden brown and the pastry has puffed nicely. Invert the baking dish on to a serving platter and let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm or at room temperature. Serves 8.

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