Parmentier of butternut squash

Parmentier of butternut squash

The classic French parmentier is made of potato mash which covers diced meat or ground meat. The dish is named after Antoine- Augustin Parmentier who in France promoted potatoes as a food source for humans. Thanks to his efforts the Faculty of Medicine in Paris declared potatoes edible in 1772.

In the following recipe, the potato mash is replaced by butternut squash purée. Butternut squash has a sweet, nutty taste, and as its deep orange colour suggests, it is a good source of antioxidants.

4 servings

About 500- 600 g ground low- fat beef
1 butternut squash
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp. butter
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. Provençal herbs
100 ml tomato sauce
Freshly ground black pepper
200 ml vegetable stock
75 g hazelnuts, coarsely chopped

Peel the butternut squash and remove the seeds. Cut into smallish pieces.

Warm 2 tbsp. olive oil in a large casserole, add the vegetable stock, and the butternut squash. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat. Cover and simmer about 30 minutes until the squash pieces are soft. Drain, but do not discard the liquid. Mash the squash, adding stock as needed, until you get a nice purée which is not too dry.

Preheat the oven to 200° C.

In a large frying pan, warm 1 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium- high heat and fry the ground beef. Add the onion, garlic, tomato sauce, Provençal herbs, and black pepper and continue sautéing for about 10 minutes until the onion is softened.

Coarsely chop the hazelnuts.

Place the ground beef as a layer in the bottom of a gratin dish. Cover evenly with the butternut squash purée. Divide the chopped hazelnuts on top of the purée.

Bake for 20 minutes until the gratin is golden brown. Serve with steamed broccoli or a green side salad.


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