Squash Butter Crostini with Blue Cheese, Celery, and Bacon

By • December 3, 2013 • 15 Comments



Author Notes: We recently got a butternut squash in our bi-weekly produce box. My plan was to make a soup like I’d always done every fall, every year. I wanted to try something a little different though: something with the same flavors, plus a few surprises, that would be an easy appetizer to put together for a party. So I switched things around a bit. Blue cheese and butternut squash are meant to be, so that went into the squash purée. The crouton moved to center stage and reinvented itself as crostini. And the celery came on board to add the splash of color and a textural element this little bite needed. So this holiday season, surprise your friends and loved ones with this unexpected twist on a seasonal classic.Callie Canlas

Food52 Review: This is a great recipe -- all of my taste-testers loved these and copied down the recipe to make for their holiday parties! The celery added crunch and helped to lighten everything up -- a great addition even though I don't usually care for it. Next time I make them, I might decrease the cheese by an ounce to let the squash shine a bit more. LauriL

Serves 8 to 10

  • 8 cups butternut squash
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 to 2 ounce blue cheese
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 6 ounces bacon, cut into 1/2-inch strips
  • 1/2 cup celery hearts, sliced thin
  • 1 baguette, cut into half-inch slices (about 36 pieces)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 400° F
  2. Combine squash, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Make sure all of the squash is coated in the oil. Transfer to a cookie sheet and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the edges of the squash start to brown. Set aside.
  3. While the squash is cooking, start the bacon in a cold pan. Cook over medium-high heat for 7 to 10 minutes until bacon is crispy and the fat has rendered. Remove bacon from the pan and set aside. (I like to have bacon grease on hand, so I save it in the fridge for other recipes instead of throwing it out.)
  4. In a food processor, combine roasted squash, blue cheese, and butter. Process until smooth. Check for seasoning and adjust as needed. Set aside.
  5. Place the slices of bread on a cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Broil on high for 3 to 5 minutes, until toasted.
  6. To assemble the crostini, spread each piece of toasted bread with about a tablespoon of the squash mixture. Top with a bit of bacon, then garnish with the celery and parsley.
  7. Notes: The pre-cut butternut squash found in grocery stores during the holiday season can be a great time saver if you want to spend a few extra bucks. You may end up with some extra squash mixture when all is said and done. It would make a great, easy soup if you added a cup or so of chicken stock.
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Tags: appetizer, bites, finger food, hors d'oeuvre, parties, squash, winter

Comments (15) Questions (1)

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3 months ago Nadia MG

So, I love every ingredient listed in this recipe but I really can't stand celery. Seems like it's for texture and freshness. Any substitution ideas?

Joncallie017

3 months ago Callie Canlas

You're right about the celery being used for texture and freshness...here's a couple ideas of things to use instead: more parsley would be a good choice, even using the whole leaves instead of chopping it at all or maybe try some thinly sliced green onion. That could offer the texture and freshness with just a slightly different flavor profile. Hope that's helpful!

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7 months ago Grazor

This looks totally scrummy. I wished I would have come across this before the holidays.

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7 months ago Kristen Kwiatkowski

I tested out this recipe and LOVED it! These were my comments after doing so: With the holidays approaching, I wanted a recipe which would be a perfect hors d’oeuvre for Christmas dinner. Tired of the usual spinach dip in a bread boule and chips/French onion dip, this recipe hollered out to me. As I am not a culinary genius in the least, I wanted something which could be achieved, even by the less-than-savvy home cook. Mission accomplished. The finished product had a subtle sweet taste and eye-catching presentation was easily achieved. Great for tapas and is perfect for dinner guests, even vegetarians (sans bacon).

Joncallie017

7 months ago Callie Canlas

So glad you tried it out Kristen! Happy New Year!

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7 months ago Kristen Kwiatkowski

Thanks, Callie. Great recipe! Happy New Year to you, also!

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7 months ago HomeSickChef

It seems like a lot of butternut (8 cups), which makes 8 -12 servings about ¾ cup of butternut per serving? I would think that would drown out the small about of butter and blue cheese. Has anyone made this?

Joncallie017

7 months ago Callie Canlas

Hey there HomeSickChef! Eight cups does sound like a lot. It's what a medium butternut squash yielded when I broke it down. It does loose quite a bit of volume during the roasting process. One tester thought maybe there was too much blue cheese. Try it out and let me know what you think. Happy Holidays!

Moi_1

7 months ago QueenSashy

Yum! Cannot wait to try them out. Congrats on the CP!

Joncallie017

7 months ago Callie Canlas

Thanks so much and way to go being chosen as one of the finalists!

Me

7 months ago TheWimpyVegetarian

And now I just went to check out yours! I really enjoyed your writing! And love the curating you're doing.

Joncallie017

7 months ago Callie Canlas

It's all still really new and the real website it due to launch the middle of January, but it's the most fun I've had in years!

Me

7 months ago TheWimpyVegetarian

This looks sooooo good!!

Joncallie017

7 months ago Callie Canlas

Thanks so much Susan! Great blog by the way :)

Me

7 months ago TheWimpyVegetarian

Thanks so much Callie. Now you really made my day :-)