‘cue (CQ) Barbecue chef’s love making popular squash side

Q: This time of year I most look forward to the Campfire Butternut Squash side special at ‘cue Barbecue. Is this a recipe they would be willing to share?

Nicole Ashton, Alpharetta

A: ‘cue Barbecue’s owner Paul Doster was happy to share this seasonal recipe and wrote, “The butternut squash is quite a popular side item and we love making it! It comes from a cooking method we used camping out while we were growing up. We would cut up vegetables, add a little salt, pepper and butter, wrap it all in a ball of aluminum foil and bury it in the hot coals of the campfire.

“This recipe is mine and I am proud of it. When we were trying to come up with a new, fun side special years ago we determined that we had not incorporated butternut squash in anything so I thought, ‘That’s a really good fall vegetable and it reminds me of camping out, fishing, shooting skeet and eating around a campfire.’

“I painstakingly peeled the butternut and cut it into bite-sized pieces (maybe a little bigger as they shrink with cooking), added some chunks of sweet onion, some brown sugar, kosher salt, a shot of fresh garlic and tossed it in melted butter. After mixing these ingredients I decided that we should wrap it all up in foil pouches and cook it like we used to do in the hot coals but in a convection oven, of course.

“Our customers loved the presentation, with the foil pursed at the top for easy opening, and we continue to get great reviews on the flavor! We love to hear the requests to put it on the menu but then fall wouldn’t be quite as special, would it?”

‘cue Barbecue’s Campfire Butternut Squash

1 (3 1/2-pound) butternut squash

1 cup 1-inch pieces sweet onion

2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon minced garlic

Black pepper

2/3 cup melted butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare six 14-inch long pieces of heavy duty foil.

Peel squash and remove seeds. Cut squash into bite-size chunks. You should have approximately 8 cups.

In a large bowl, combine squash cubes and onion and toss together. Add brown sugar, salt and garlic and toss to combine. Add black pepper to taste. Pour butter over all the ingredients and stir by hand until all pieces are coated. Divide mixture between sheets of foil, continuing to stir mixture while dividing so all pieces stay coated in sugar/butter/garlic mixture. Divide any remaining melted butter from the bottom of the bowl between the portioned squash. Pull up sides of foil to seal each package and pinch closed. Arrange foil packages on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until squash is tender, 30 to 45 minutes. Serves: 6

Per serving: 195 calories (percent of calories from fat, 12), 3 grams protein, 44 grams carbohydrates, 4 grams fiber, 3 grams fat (2 grams saturated), 7 milligrams cholesterol, 230 milligrams sodium.

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