Comfort food meets color. Packed with potassium (good for bone health), vitamin B6 (good for functioning nervous and immune systems) the butternut squash's orange hue shines through in this dish.
4 cups thinly sliced butternut squash
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 ½ cups milk, heated or at room temperature
1 teaspoon salt
2-3 fresh sage leaves, crumbled
½ cup grated white cheddar cheese
½ cup aged Gruyère cheese
½ cup grated cheese (white cheddar or Gruyere or both) to sprinkle on top
¼ cup bread crumbs (panko or otherwise)
Preheat oven to 350 F. Greasea 15” x 10” baking pan and set aside. In a small saucepan, melt butter and blend in flour. Whisk until butter is melted and flour is fully integrated with the melted butter. Add milk slowly as you stir with a whisk. Add sage leaves to season sauce as sauce thickens. Cook sauce on medium heat until smooth. Just as it begins to boil, remove sage leaves, reduce heat and stir in cheese. Place half of the sliced squash into the baking pan. Pour half of the cheese sauce over the squash. Repeat with second layer of squash and cheese sauce. Sprinkle remaining cheese and breadcrumbs on top. Bake uncovered for about an hour until the top is browned.
Add more sage leaves, sauté in butter or olive oil until crisp and sprinkle on top for extra flavor and color.
Feel free to mix sliced squash with sliced potatoes, like we did.
Curious to know the finer points of making a béchamel sauce? Check out a great BBC video at How to Make Béchamel (White Sauce).