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Casserole of sausage, squash and tomatoes

SERVES 4

4 medium-sized firm tomatoes

1 pound hot Italian sausage, in patties

1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds)

1 medium onion, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/8 teaspoon white pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the tomatoes in half horizontally and let them rest cut side down on a rack.

In a frying pan over high heat, brown each side of the sausage patties for 1 minute.

Peel the squash, discard the seeds and grate the flesh in food processor or with a sturdy cheese grater. Mix the squash shreds with the onion, salt and nutmeg and put into a greased casserole. Arrange the sausage on top, cover and bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven.

Arrange the tomato halves around the edge of the dish. Scatter the oregano and white pepper over them. Return to the oven and bake for a further 5 to 7 minutes.

Claire Hopley

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