Katy’s Squash Surprise

This week has been hard. I had some ‘proper’ content lined up and was going to push through with it last night but then I nearly fell asleep on my office floor, so I decided to listen to what my body was telling me. I need a break and some comfort, but I didn’t want you to miss out this week.

One of my favourite comfort activities is cooking for myself. When I cook for others I get really flustered about how it’s going to turn out but, when I cook for myself, it’s ok if things look a bit…rustic.

This recipe tends to look, shall we say, homemade, but it’s the ultimate in comfort food. It’s pretty easy, it takes a little while so you can put your feet up halfway through, and it’s full of both vitamins and cheese.

I’ve been cooking this for about ten years so the original recipe is long gone from my memory, so it’s possible that this will be the worst recipe to follow in the world. Trust me, though, the finished product is a good one.

Let me introduce you to the ultimate in comfort eating- it’s…

Katy’s Squash Surprise!

Picture description: A whole bunch of fresh squash in a box at the supermarket.

Ingredients (enough for two portions)

One big butternut squash, cut in half and with the seeds removed (please be careful)

A pretty decent amount of butter

Four or six dashes of dark soy sauce

Two teaspoons of honey

Two generous pinches of paprika

A few cloves of diced garlic

Half a diced onion

Two sprinkles of dried or fresh herbs

An actual fuckton of your favourite cheese, grated (I like to use an extra mature cheddar but you can use whatever you like best. Vegan cheese works just as well so long as it melts ok).

Method

1) Prep your ingredients and heat your oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.

2) Rub the whole of the squash with butter. Yeah, baby! Then pop the halves on a baking tray or roasting tray or whatever you have to hand that won’t set on fire in the oven.

3) There’ll be a natural little divot in the squash halves where you scooped the seeds out. Put a bit more butter in there, then add the soy sauce and the honey. Generally sprinkle the paprika in there and on the rest of the squash halves.

4) Bang those babies in the oven for about 45 minutes while you go and watch an episode of your favourite TV show.

5) After 45 minutes, your squash friends should be nice and soft in the middle. Wait for them to cool a little, then scoop the yummy insides into a bowl, leaving the skin and enough of the flesh behind to leave a solid base.

6) Mix the squash innards you’ve just scooped out with the garlic, the onion, any herbs you think are tasty, and about three quarters of your grated cheese.

7) Scoop the squash-mix back into the squash-shells, then cover it all with the rest of your grated cheese.

8) Pop them back in the oven for about fifteen minutes, or basically until the cheese looks melted and golden.

9) Serve your delicious squash dinner with salad, chips, or basically whatever you want. Enjoy the delicious atrocity you have created!

Picture description: A homemade squash surprise with an attempt at homemade chips from around 2011.

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