Jul 25, 2013

Butternut Squash Fries

Meet my little friend, Mr. Butternut. He's been helping me to overcome my french fry addiction by offering me a healthy alternative. I highly recommend his services.

I LOVE french fries. As in, I could skip the burger and just eat the fries. They are the ultimate comfort food, but unfortunately, the ultimate fatty food. When I started Weight Watchers back in 2012, I came across Hungry Girl's french fry alternative, and gave it a test drive. To me they fall somewhere in between the french fry and the sweet potato fry, but unlike french fries and sweet potato fries, these butternut babies are ZERO Weight Watcher points plus values! Score! Almost a year later, and I'm still relying on this simple recipe to curb the fry craving.

You start out by slicing the ends off of your butternut squash and peeling it with a vegetable peeler.
Oh yeah, and now would be a good time to preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

Next you slice it in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds from the round bottom half. 

From there you can cut it up into French fry shapes/spears however you please. I usually cut each half right when the neck meets the round bottom and go from there.

Once your squash is cut into french fry shapes, lay the fries out on a paper towel and sprinkle them lightly with salt. This part is pretty cool. The salt will slowly pull the moisture out of the squash fries, and they'll start to look like they're sweating. I leave mine for about 5-10 minutes. Once they're worked up a good sweat, blot them dry with another paper towel to remove the moisture.
Skipping this important step will lead to soggy fries, so no shortcuts!

Now it's time to bake them! To bake mine, I take a wire cooling rack, spray it with non-stick cooking spray, and lay it inside a cookie sheet. This helps the fries to breath better and to cook more evenly, which leads to crispier fries. If you don't have a cooling rack, just spray the cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray and lay them directly on the cookie sheet. No bigs.

Bake the fries for 40 minutes, flipping halfway through. Fries are done when they start to brown on the edges and get crispy.

Serve them with your condiment of choice and enjoy!

{shared with Homegrown & Healthy's Mostly Homemade Mondays}


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