RECIPE BY Victoria Granof
PHOTOGRAPH BY Jeremy Liebman
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon crushed dried rose petals (optional)
1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
4 pounds assorted small winter squash (such as acorn, kabocha, or delicata)
3/4 cups pomegranate seeds
INGREDIENT INFO? – Dried rose petals are available at Middle Eastern markets and kalustyans.com.
Mix all ingredients except salt in a small bowl until lime juice is incorporated. Season with salt. Cover; keep in a cool place. DO AHEAD Spiced butter can be made 1 week ahead. Roll into logs, wrap in parchment paper, and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months.
Trim ends of acorn and kabocha squash and cut in half through the stem end. Scrape out seeds and place squash cut side down on a cutting board (do not peel). Cut halves crosswise into 1/2-inch slices. If using delicata squash, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch rings; scrape out seeds.
Fill a large wide pot with water to a depth of 1/2-inch and add a pinch of salt; bring to a boil. Add squash slices; reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and steam, adding more water as needed to maintain 1/2-inch of water at bottom of pot, until squash is tender but not falling apart, 20-25 minutes.
Carefully transfer squash slices to a large platter (some squash at bottom of pot may be too soft; save for another purpose4) and season with salt.
Reduce water in pot over high heat (or add hot water) to measure 3/4 cup. Remove from heat and whisk in spiced butter, 1 tablespoonful at a time, to form a rich, glossy sauce. Season to taste with salt. Drizzle spiced butter over squash. Top with pomegranate seeds.
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