Top 10 Ways to Use Butternut Squash

‘Tis the season. NO—not to be jolly and sing Christmas carols. We still have a good month left of fall enjoyment. That means to leave the Christmas decorations in the basement, put down the Christmas songs CD, and bring on the fall foods and drinks. Butternut squash has become a food staple of the fall season. But there is only so much Butternut Squash Soup that you can eat. SO…for the next month, try some of these. You’re welcome.

10. Butternut Squash Chantrelle and Brie Pizza


Pizza pizza! Girlfriend and I tried making this ourselves and it came out pretty well. Any variation would be delicious, but I saw this version and I think the brie would make the perfect pairing with the butternut squash. All it needs now is some short ribs…

Recipe: Heather Christo

9. Butternut Squash Muffins

butternut squash muffins 1

Pumpkin muffins are delicious, but what about butternut squash? I could see these muffins being eaten as snacks, dessert, or even with a savory breakfast. Maybe some butterscotch chips in these?

Recipe: WendyInKK

8. Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells


When I first saw this recipe, I thought the shells would be stuffed with some kind of butternut squash mixture. Instead, it is the traditional stuffed shells, but the sauce is a savory butternut mixture. Looking for a quick meal on a cold night? Try these out.

Recipe: Fifteen Spatulas

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A Different Benedict


When I heard that Brooklyn’s legendary Junior’s restaurant was releasing new a cookbook, you know I was all up on this. I mean, this is the place that invented the “something different” sandwich: two giant potato latkes holding up a bevy of beef brisket.

That monstrosity/amazingness isn’t included in Junior’s Home Cooking, but they do have another spin for how to combine breakfast beef and carbs. The Junior’s “different benedict” offers up eggs and hollandaise over corned beef hash. Yes.

A Different Benedict

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300 Half-Eaten Sandwiches

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So the food world is all atwitter about 300 Sandwiches. If you’ve been living under a rock, or don’t check your food blog links 5 times a day, here’s the gist: New York Post reporter Stephanie Smith was befuddled by her boyfriend’s obsession with sandwiches, especially after she made him a particularly tasty one and he replied “Honey, you’re 300 sandwiches away from an engagement ring.” Calling his bluff, Smith started a blog chronicling her quest to make 300 perfect sandwiches, and she is damn well expecting a ring once the list is finished. Feminist bloggers were unsurprisingly appalled. Personally, my reaction was the same as pretty much any other guy’s, saying to my girlfriend, H: “honey, we should do this!!!” To which I received an epic eyeroll along with a response I perhaps should have seen coming: “If you like sandwiches so much why don’t you make me 300 sandwiches?”

She had a point. I do like to cook, and I am constantly perplexed at the gf’s inability to understand my intense love for the magnificence of meals between bread. “I’ll do it!” I said. I’ll make her all 300 sandwiches, and by the end she will have to understand why I love these beauties so much. It will bring the gf and I closer together and help us land, if not a wedding date, at least a blog-to-book deal.

I set to work.

Re-creation #1: 300 Sandwiches’ gorgeous mozzarella and homemade pesto BLT:



I’m usually a mess in the kitchen, but this time I followed Smith’s instructions to a T — frying up crispy bacon and layering it on a baguette with pesto, arugula, tomato and fresh mozz. I resisted my urge to get creative and made just one game-time decision: frying the baguette in leftover bacon grease instead of toasting it. I mean, come on. Obviously.

I have to admit I set out wanting to make fun of Smith, but gotta give credit where credit is due: this sandwich is not only pretty, it’s delicious. Definitely one of the best I’ve had in a while.


My BLT re-creation


Um, maybe too delicious though. By the time H made it in to the kitchen, the BLT’s photogenic appearance had evaporated, along with 60% of the sandwich.

BLT after

Oops! No worries. Still 299 attempts left to solidify this love between myself, my girl and my lunch.

Re-creation #2: Spring Cleaning Goat Cheese and Basil Grilled Cheese:

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Brussels Sprouts Caesar Salad

Brussels Sprout Caesar Salad

Brussels Sprouts Caesar Salad

There’s a cute place in Austin’s Manor neighborhood called the Salty Sow. Their slogan is “swine + wine + beer” so clearly I’m on board. (I love Salty Sow so much that I actually wrote a bit about them in an ES post last summer!) This head-to-tail gastropub specializes in all things porky and meaty, of course, but surprisingly one of my favorite things on their menu is a salad! Go figure.

This isn’t just any salad, though. It starts with brussels sprouts, always a winner in my book, and makes them into a take on the Caesar salad, topped with dried cranberries and candied almonds. It’s salty, savory, slightly crispy, and just a tad bit sweet. My mouth is seriously watering just thinking about it.

I loved this salad so much that I begged the recipe out of ’em, and now I want all of you to experience its magic.

Brussels Sprouts Caesar Salad

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Homemade Bacon and Cheddar Bagels

Bacon and Cheddar Bagel

Three words:


bacon bagel


bacon bagel


bacon bagel bite

If you’re a fan (and who are we kidding, we all are), you need to get in on this bagel making.

These bagels have the lovely exterior firmness of a bagel with an added bonus of a fluffy almost biscuit-like texture inside.  Plus they are filled with bacon and cheddar…and then topped with more bacon.

Need I say more?

Bacon & Cheddar Bagels

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The Brews of Summer: 100 Beers to Enjoy in the Heat

For those of you complaining about pumpkin beer and Oktoberfest releases coming too early, I bring you this masterpiece. Now you have 100 beers to choose from while you bask in the last month of summer. As per the top ten list, I defined a summer brew as: Wheats, Saisons, Wits, Pilsners, Pale Ales, IPAs, and fruity beers. Of course this list is NOT exhaustive. You should know that you will be able to go to any microbrewery near you and enjoy a summer seasonal. And I included microbreweries that may not distribute as well….road trip, anyone?

I leave you with this: “And I can tell you my love for beer will still be strong after the beers of summer have gone.”

You’re welcome.

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 7_image_brooklyn-pilsner_large  lagunitas-a-little-sumpin-sumpin-ale summerfest-nodate2  SummerLove-Bottle
 kellerweis  60-minute-ipa
 beer_rb_prod  PMScaldis-bout-verre-241x400
 strawberry  bottledetaillargeporchrockerv2--en--82748a16-b61b-4111-95c7-4e8de783a4f9  sahtea

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 timthumb  img.apa.lg  BlackEye_web  Devils-Backbone-Kilt-Flasher-Label
 StarrSaison_Bottle_Fixed1_thumb  3bottles
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 beer_weizen-thumb-75  raspberrywheat_logo  farmhouse-400  woodycreek2013
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 sawtooth_ale_bottle_glass_548862380 (1)  White_Label  hopfive  beer-highway22wheatsmall
 berwick_ipa  final_stbc_2010 body labels_hopsun_b
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 steam-bio  caferacer22  SummerSqueeze_Bottle_tab  Citra_Blonde_Summer_Webshot
 Blueberry-Belch-poster  Bottle120  cape northerLightsFixed
 summerlyte  sweetaction_front  goofyfoot_logo
 B&C  our_beers_SOLACE  SummerBeer-2013-Modal  SmmrAleCan_Drps_LRG-e1319817438847
 apollo_front  robot-surf-factory_web-large_transparent  st-lupe-bottle-glass  psblueberrylyte
 ind_bp_label_2xipa  american-amber-label  littlewhitelielogo  Victorian Secret
 Bottle90  a8bacd58-7288-4f6a-8873-d9bb852be99c  beer_pils-thumb-75  saison_logo
 she-monster_web_large_transparent  PILS  kolsch  bitteramerican_can-230x409
 bengali_front  melonheadlyte  tripel-detail  Gose_2013_WebProductPhoto
 racerx  summer-bio  productpic  ind_bp_label_pmx
 aud-blonde-v2  Hob_Label
brew_label_s_twilight Flying Dog Pineapple Saison 198x.preview  space-monkey-poster1

Missed one? Let us know what you would include!

All 100 Ways — 1,500 recipes and counting! — found here.



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Hot Dogs Gone Wild! Top 10 Fixin’s for Your Hot Dog

With the Fourth of July ahead, and at least one package of hot dogs sitting in your freezer or fridge, it”s time to start thinking about your cook-out. Whether it”s you alone or at your jam-packed amazing and mega-impressive/amazeballs party, it”s time to think about spicing up your wieners. For you (and only you), I”ve done my research on the craziest and tastiest varieties of fixin”s for your dog. Choose on and serve, or create a twisted hot dog bar.  Then impress. Here we go…

10. Bacon Wrapped (and Stuffed)


Bacon is one of the few foods that I believe goes well with everything. Bacon makes all things better. Now, combine it with one of America”s favorite foods, by topping it and stuffing it with bacon. Add cheese and sauerkraut with your typical condiments. Bacon inspires all.

Recipe: Simply Recipes

9. Columbian


I”ve put potato chips on sandwiches, burgers, but never thought to put them on a hot dog already topped with slaw and sauces. Some believe that there is such a thing as too many condiments, or strictly using mustard and only that. It looks like the Columbian may change their minds.

Recipe: My Columbian Recipes

8. Mexican


Pineapple is one thing I never thought of topping my wiener with. But along with chipotle sauce, sweet and spicy sounds good. A couple of jalapenos add a nice kick.

Recipe: Homesick Texan

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