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Happy New Year!

During this season, I have a little more time on my hands and get to do a little more cooking. One of my favorite squashes is Delicata. Its delicate flavor and edible skin make it a great addition to roasted vegetables or as a standalone entrée.

Well, for Christmas, I decided on a roasted Delicata and pear dish. Don’t you just love the Internet for finding great recipes? I stumbled upon the one listed below. It was the perfect balance of sweet and spicy. The chili powder really helps the squash to engage those taste buds. I didn’t have any pears on hand, so I substituted apples. The apples worked great, but knowing how pears roast, I would definitely opt for pears as my first choice. Overall, I would rate this recipe a smashing success. Enjoy!

What entrée was your favorite this holiday season?

Chili-Brown Sugar Delicata Squash with Pears from
Pears and delicata squash tossed with brown sugar, chili powder and bacon is a delectable combination. To make this vegetarian, omit the bacon and toss the squash and pears with the brown sugar and chili powder during the last 5 minutes of roasting.
(4 servings, about 3/4 cup each | Active Time: 20 minutes | Total Time: 35 minutes)
1 pound delicata squash (about 1 large)
2 medium ripe but firm pears, sliced
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 slices bacon
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon chili powder

Preheat oven to 425°F.
Cut squash in half lengthwise; scoop out seeds. Cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices. Toss in a large bowl with pears, oil, salt and pepper. Spread on a large baking sheet.
Roast the squash and pears until just tender, stirring once or twice, 20 to 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.
Discard all but 2 teaspoons fat from the pan. Over medium heat, stir in water, brown sugar and chili powder. Add the squash and pears; toss to coat. Crumble the bacon on top.