Heh. Doesn’t that sound fancy? Or loosely translated as Butternut Squash and Duxelles Casserole. Either way, it is AWESOME! I saw the recipe on the internet via Vegetarian Times but changed it up to make it GF for the non-gluten eaters in my family. Oh dear God…..divine! The French r.e.a.l.l.y know how to make food taste heavenly. and the best part? Only 135 calories in a ONE CUP serving. That’s right, low calorie to boot! It doesn’t get much better! Enjoy!
First, what’s a “duxelle” (pronounced dook-SEHL), you may be wondering? Yeah, me too. It’s a mushroom and onion paste used to flavor classic french dishes and OMG! It alone it enough to make you swoon! When I was assembling this dish, Steve came into the kitchen and walked straight over to the stove asking “What smells so GOOD?” Uh-huh. I swear, duxelles can make liver and onions palatable….although I am not going to put it to the test as that would be a perfect waste of mushrooms and onions!
Butternut Squash & Duxelles Casserole
1 (2.5 lb.) Butternut or Kabocha squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/4″ slices
8 oz. fresh mushrooms or mushroom stems (Good way to use up shitake and portobello stems!)
2 shallots, coarsely chopped (1/4 cup)- Can also use a mild sweet onion.
1 1/2 T. butter
1 T. parsley, finely chopped
1/4 t. fresh ground pepper
1 c. rice or almond milk (or 1% cow’s milk)
2 T. cornstarch
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 c. shredded Gruyere cheese
1/8 t. fresh grated nutmeg
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a deep-dish casserole or gratin dish with butter or olive oil.
To make duxelle paste:
Add mushrooms to a food processor and pulse about 20 times or until finely chopped (or just chop the dickens out of them like I did!) Do the same with the onions/shallots. Melt butter in a heavy skillet; Add the mushrooms and onions and cook until the mushrooms have released their liquid and the onions have slightly browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in parsley and pepper.
To make the sauce:
Mix the cornstarch into a small amount of cold milk in a small sauce pot. Add the remainder of the milk and mix thoroughly. Put over a medium flame stirring constantly with a wire whisk. Add the minced garlic and the freshly grated nutmeg. Stir until the mixture is cooked and coats the back of spoon. Add the cheese and continue stirring to create a smooth sauce. The sauce should have a pourable consistency; If it seems thick, add a SMALL amount of milk and continue stirring and checking the consistency so it doesn’t get too thin either.
Spread 1/3 the squash into the bottom of the prepared pan. Top with 1/3 the cheese sauce and sprinkle with 1/3 the mushroom mixture. repeat layers ending with with cheese sauce. Sprinkle with another 1/4 cup additional grated Gruyere cheese if desired. (I desired!) Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until squash is tender and top is browned. Let stand 15 minutes before serving as the squash will have released juices and the casserole will need time to reabsorb the liquid.
Serving suggestions: Steamed asparagus, roasted root veggies, and hot GF rolls and farm fresh butter!