Parmesan-Herb Delicata Rings

I was only recently introduced to delicata squash, but now I am an ardent fan. These parmesan-herb delicata rings are one of my favorite things to do with it so far. The distinctive flavor of rosemary partners nicely with Parmesan cheese and the mellow sweetness of the delicata. As the squash softens in the oven the breading becomes enticingly crispy…a tasty finger-food perfect for dipping in the accompanying yogurt sauce. Makes a great side with burgers too.

Serves about 2

  • 1 medium delicata squash
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1-1.5 oz chunk of Parmesan cheese (see below)
  • 1/2 tsp crumbled or ground dried rosemary
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt (I like to use Greek)
  • 1-2 tbsp milk (optional)
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp parsley flakes

Prep the squash and breading

Preheat the oven to 375 F (190 C).

Wash the delicata and trim the ends. If your squash is fatter, you may be able to cut it in half and de-seed each half with a spoon, then slice. If it’s too narrow to fit a spoon, slice first and de-seed rings with the knife one at a time. Alternately, you can cut it in half lengthwise, de-seed with a spoon, and make C-shaped squash bites instead of rings. Whichever you choose, remove the spongy/slimy seedy part in the center and slice about 1/4 inch (6-7 mm) thick. Try to get the slices fairly uniform in thickness so they cook evenly.

In a shallow bowl or on a plate, mix the breadcrumbs, rosemary, and salt. Use a micro plane (ideally) to grate the Parmesan into the bowl. It will be around the same volume grated as the breadcrumb mixture. Toss with your fingers to mix evenly.

Bread and bake!

In a small bowl, whisk the egg well. Set both bowls next to an un-greased cookie sheet or a vented pizza pan. Dip a slice of delicata into the egg, coating it completely. Tap vigorously against the side bowl to remove as much excess egg as possible, and then drop it into the cheese mixture. Toss to coat, and transfer to baking sheet. I like to use one hand for dipping in the egg and the other for tossing in the crumbs to avoid an increasingly thick coating of cheesy, eggy goop building up on my finger tips.

Repeat with all the remaining slices, arranging them in a single layer on the pan (touching a little is fine, but no overlapping). Bake for about 25 minutes on the middle rack, or until the squash is tender, and the crumbs lightly browned. Meanwhile, make the dipping sauce!

Whisk yogurt, lemon juice, and parsley in a ramekin or small bowl. Depending on the thickness of the yogurt you’re using, you may want to thin it down with a tablespoon or two of milk to make it nicer for dipping into.

Use a spatula to remove the parmesan-herb delicata rings from the baking tray and serve them while still warm.

parmesan-herb delicata rings

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