I realize I'm sort of repeating myself here, but it couldn't be helped. Butternut squash and greens are just meant to be together. The bitter greens balance the sweet squash, and I've been getting, well let's just say, a steady supply of butternut squashes from my CSA this fall. So, once again, I have for you a savory dish with that perfect pairing. I was hoping to find a dish using butternut squash that would be good for brunch, and I found just the right thing on Epicurious. This first appeared in last November's Bon Appetit in Molly Wizenberg's story about creating a vegetarian main course for Thanksgiving. It's a rich and hearty, savory bread pudding with roasted squash, sauteed greens, lots of cheddar cheese, and a custard accented with dijon mustard and white wine. It would have been very fitting on the Thanksgiving table, but it was just as nice for brunch the weekend before.
First, the squash was peeled, seeded, cubed, and roasted. I actually roasted the squash the day before and stored it in the refrigerator. Then, a baguette was cubed and soaked with the custard mixture of eggs, whole milk, white wine, dijon mustard, and salt and pepper. The recipe calls for half and half, but I lightened it up just a bit by using whole milk instead. As the bread sat to soak, fresh greens that had been coarsely chopped were sauteed with minced shallots. Kale was the recommended type of greens here, but I used the broccoli greens I had just received from my CSA. Everything was layered in a baking dish, starting with half of the bread mixture, then half of the kale, and half of the roasted squash. That was topped with shredded cheddar cheese, and the layers were repeated. The assembled bread pudding was covered with parchment and foil, and it baked for about 20 minutes. The foil and parchment were removed, and it baked an additional 20 minutes.
Bread puddings are so versatile, and they make fantastic one-dish meals for brunch. This one was delightfully full of vegetables, and I've already gone on about how much I enjoy squash with greens. The melted cheese in the center and the browned cheese on top just made it even better. Now, I need to decide how to use the four more butternut squashes that are sitting in my kitchen this week.