It’s FALL! The Yelton Manor test kitchen is fired up to fashion some new recipes using the season’s freshest ingredients from our local farms. Coming into the market right now are bushels of tomatoes, summer and winter squashes, eggplant, beets, plums, apples, peppers. It’s The Grand Finale of the harvest!!!
This casserole is the nexus of my lifelong passion for Mac and Cheese, love of roasted vegetables, mission of breakfast, and gratitude for exactly the right herb and spice. Breakfast is the *new dinner*, so plan this as an appetizer, main event or side dish at your autumn dinner party. It has WOW factor presentation too!
I always double this recipe so I have one to give away. It’s a kitchen mess, so you might as well double up. It’s fun to share food!
Choose a baking dish approximately 9X13. This will make 15 small servings, 12 if larger portions. This is fabulous freshly made, of course, but also refrigerates nicely as a leftover and can be microwaved by the serving. Like anything with cheese that you are “rewarming”, choose a defrost cycle on your microwave so the cheese doesn’t “seize”. I am currently freezing a few portions and will come back to edit this when I know if that’s a good option.
Here’s what you need: 3-4 butternut squash, depending on their size. You will just use the neck (for perfect medallions, optimum pizzaz!), so look for squash with long, lovely necks. Chop, roast and freeze the rest of the squash for a soup, or veggie pot pies, later.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees for roasting the squash. Prepare cookie sheet(s) with foil or parchment paper for roasting. Prepare baking dish(s) by coating the bottom and sides with olive oil and a sprinkle of kosher salt.
Peel and thinly slice the squash. In a large bowl, gently toss the squash medallions with olive oil, salt and pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg. Spread the squash on the cookie sheet(s) and roast for about 30 minutes, until soft to a fork.
Get your grated cheese ready. A cup of Smoked Gouda and a cup of sharp cheddar cheese. Chop a bunch of scallion, including some of the green part.
For the custard, crack 10 eggs into a large bowl and add a handful of water, whisk like a warrior woman for a full minute. The ultimate awesomeness of this recipe depends on this whisk! C’mon, whisk it!
Gently fold in the cheese, scallions, a dash of paprika if you like a bit of heat, chopped dill if you like, and the roasted squash.
Pour the mixture into the casserole. For a dramatic effect, crack three more eggs onto the top of the frittata and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Next time I make this I am going to try and use a knife to cut the egg whites outward and maybe it will create a starburst effect!? I’ll keep you posted on that.
Don’t be tempted (I am a mac and cheese freak, remember?) to add a bread crumb topping to this. It needs no further adornment and the top is going to be worth seeing just as it is. Reduce the temperature in the oven to 325 and bake, uncovered, for about 40-50 minutes. The edges should be puffy and brown and the center should be firm, no jiggling. Remove from oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.
Oooh, are you ready for the layers of lusciousness?