Thursday, November 15, 2012

Roasted winter squash bruschetta with carmelized onions, Thank you, Mark Bittman

Here is a post to say thank you to Mark Bittman, who I will always think of as The Minimalist, of the New York Times. Mark Bittman doesn't appear to be doing The Minimalist series anymore (or, at least, I haven't seen it in awhile), which is sad, but fine. At least he hasn't fallen off the map completely. He has been posting videos in a How To Cook Everything series, which seems like the logical next step after minimalist cooking.

Mark, I've grown with you. When I was in college, you made me believe that I could create something so much better, but just as easy as, spaghetti and marinara sauce from a jar (I think that is the only thing I "cooked" in college). And then I started cooking easy, quality recipes from scratch. And now that I have done my fair share of single-digit ingredient cooking, we will move onto cooking EVERYTHING. (Though, this recipe is pretty minimalist, too, I suppose...)

Mark, I wanted to say: we could conquer the world.

Just kidding, Mark. I'm honestly pretty lame compared to you. We aren't an even match at all.

Anyway, here is what I cooked up today, under the video guidance of Mark Bittman and chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten.

I made these bruschetta with home made wheat bread using a simple King Arthur Flour recipe.

I used a combination of delicatta and acorn squash. Delicatta squash has a far shorter storage life than most winter squash, so if you notice its stripes starting to turn orange use it!

    I think winter squash is beautiful. Cut them open, scoop out the insides, and chop the skin off. I used a carrot peeler. Works pretty well.

   Roast the squash at 450 degrees F with generous amounts of olive oil, salt and some red pepper flakes. Roast until the squash is tender enough to smash easily with a fork. This can be anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour depending on how big you cut your squash slices. Unroasted:

Roasted and smashed!

Now it's onion time. Take two red onions, cut them into long, skinny slices. Carmelize them in a pan on medium heat with some salt and olive oil for about 10 minutes. Get them browned. Deglaze the pan with half a cup of maple syrup and a cup of apple cider vinegar. Sweet and sour onions make your house smell nice.

Deglaze it.

After 30 or so minutes, you'll get sweet, sour, squishy, darkened onions. Which is good.

Toast bread slices, buttered on both sides, in a cast iron skillet. Top with a spoonful of ricotta. Add on a dollop of roasted squash, and a spoonful of the onions. Top with fresh herbs.

Sunlight and delish.



  1. so lovely! this looks delicious and your pictures are great. mark bittman makes me happy too.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Chrystie! You're my faithful commenter. You been cooking up anything good lately?