Prep time: 15 minutes (plus 2-3 hours marinating time)
Cook time: 75 minutes
1 2 3/4 - to 3-pound Butternut squash, halved crosswise, seeded
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup heavy cream or whole milk (to reduce the calories, half of this liquid can be replaced by chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, divided
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise. Remove seeds. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over each squash half.
3. Place squash halves, cut side down, on prepared baking sheet. Place in oven and bake until squash is very tender when pierced with knife, about 75 minutes. Allow to cool just long enough to handle.
4. Scoop out squash flesh into bowl and mash until almost smooth. Keep the mashed squash warm over moderate heat.
5. Melt butter in skillet over medium-high heat until beginning to brown, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and thyme and stir 1 minute. Add butter mixture to mashed squash and stir to incorporate.
6. Add broth and cream to squash and mix until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Add parsley. Taste for seasoning. (Mashed squash can be cooled, stored in the refrigerator and reheated later.)