Savory Butternut Squash Soaked Oat MuffinsAs the weather turns colder and my farm share starts including butternut squashes, I tend to do one of two things: I roast them or I pile them up in a cold corner of my breakfast nook to make my Strategic Winter Squash Reserve (link to my FB page photo of SWSR 2013). With the roasted squash, I make different main dishes or side dishes.
Late last winter, however, when the Strategic Winter Squash Reserve was the only source of 'fresh' CSA farm share vegetables [still had stuff put up in the freezer and pantry], I got creative. I shredded the squash. Shredding a vegetable that you normally use in a mashed form gives you all sorts of options (like Chicken Saltimbocca). I've revamped my Visual Recipe Index! For more ideas on what to do with your butternut squash, click here.
In the end, I veered into the savory muffin direction (oh come on, the title of today's post gave it away). I had a bit of leftover dribs and drabs from a ham, and figured I'd chop them up and add them to the batter. I added a bit of cornmeal for crunch, and a bit of thyme because I could, and honey in place of sugar for a hint of sweetness--not too much. For a rather virtuous muffin (whole grain, no processed sugar) they are delicious. Come see!
|At first mixing|
|After soaking an hour or two. And adding thyme.|
Savory Butternut Squash Soaked Oat Muffins1 cup shredded raw butternut squash
1 cup oats
1 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup OlivExtra (or cooking oil of your choice)
2 Tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup chopped ham (optional, could be a bit more, could be a bit less)
In a large bowl, combine squash, oats and buttermilk. Let sit at room temperature 1 - 8 hours (or prep up to a few days in advance and store in fridge). When you're ready to bake, preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 12 cup muffin pan with oil spray. Add egg, oil, honey and thyme to the squash mixture, stir thoroughly. Dump dry ingredients on top, mix a bit, add ham, and stir just until combined. Check the consistency of your batter. If the batter seems a bit stiff or dry, add a tablespoon or two of buttermilk to the mixture (I used 2 and that did the trick). Scoop** (affiliated link to my muffin scoop) batter into prepared pan. Bake 18-20 minutes. Cool in pan 5 minutes, run a knife around the edges, and turn onto a rack to cool completely.
Try these with soup!
**My scoop holds 3 Tablespoons (1 ½ ounces) by volume, though the muffin batter is mounded in the scoop so I'm pretty sure I'm putting a good 3 ½ to 4 Tablespoons into each muffin well. The muffin wells in my regular muffin pans each hold 3 ounces by volume.