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Add a Little "Ooh La La" to your Celebratory Thanksgiving Food Traditions

Hasselback Butternut Squash—a gorgeous side dish for your table

Article by Victoria Topham

Photography by Photos courtesy of Victoria Topham

Originally published in St George City Lifestyle

The recipe calls for using the microwave to get a jump-start on the cooking process for the squash. This will help make cutting the squash in the thin accordion-style slices much easier. 


1 small butternut squash, scrubbed, peeled and seeded 

1 tablespoon melted butter                           

2 tablespoons whole milk or cream 

½ cup whole wheat panko breadcrumbs 

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese                

1 clove garlic 

1 tablespoon fresh thyme, minced                           

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced                             

Pinch nutmeg 

2 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes 

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, generous amounts 

Special equipment: 2 12” chopsticks 


Combine breadcrumbs, minced herbs, garlic cloves, nutmeg, Parmesan and butter cubes in the bowl of food processor; quickly process crumbs in quick pulses to cornmeal consistency. Set aside.  

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 

Peel squash. Cut in half vertically, scoop out seeds; place face down in a Ziploc-style freezer bag. Add 3 tablespoons water and seal bag, leaving 1 inch of Ziploc unsealed. Microwave on high until squash is slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Let steam in bag for additional 1 minute. Remove squash from bag and place cut side up. Slightly cool. 

Place squash half, cut side down, on cutting board. Place chopsticks parallel to the squash on either side to prevent knife from cutting through. Thinly slice crosswise in 1/8-inch slices. Place squash halves cut side down on a parchment-lined sheet pan.  

Combine melted butter and milk; drizzle over squash, ensuring liquid goes between slices. Liberally salt and pepper before stuffing with prepared crumb mixture, putting crumb mixture between layers. Press remaining crumbs on top. Bake until tender, 15-18 minutes. Avoid over-browning by creating an aluminum foil tent placed lightly over squash to finish baking. 

Serves 2 generously, or 4 as a side dish. 

I love Thanksgiving classics, but I still like to change things up. This year I will prepare Hasselback Butternut Squash with crispy breadcrumb topping—a perfect Thanksgiving side. Salty meats could be added to counterbalance the sweetness of the butternut. Alternatively, prepare with toasted pistachio, coconut milk and curry. Delicious!

  • Chef Victoria Topham shops for fresh produce