Delicata squash has always been my sweetheart of the winter squashes. It’s intensely velvety and flavorful, but I also love it for the name, which just sounds like something I want to eat. Delicata. Delicata. Delicata.
This oblong and wavy-skinned squash is really more of a fall squash than a winter one. It doesn’t store as long as your butternut and acorn because its skin and flesh are more, well, delicate. All winter squash have edible skin, but the delicata’s striped skin is especially tender. The flesh is sweet and creamy, and the dips and grooves in the skin create the appearance of a flower when you cut it in a cross section. It’s perfect for stuffing, but I love to eat it on its own, roasted into tender bites with a little olive oil and smoked paprika. This recipe works equally well for dinner as a predinner or party snack. We call them chips, but they don’t really crunch unless you’ve got a burnt bit, which is pretty delicious. They’re more chips in the sense that you just can’t stop eating them.
- Yield: 4 Servings
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for greasing the baking sheet
- 2 pounds delicata squash (2 to 3 squash), washed, ends cut off, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut crosswise into ¼-inch slices
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Optional: Large flake sea salt, such as Maldon, or smoked salt
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease a baking sheet with oil.
- Combine the delicata slices with the 3 tablespoons of olive oil, paprika, and kosher salt. Lay the slices out in a rough single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Roast, shuffling occasionally, until the slices become tender all the way through and deepen in color, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove the tray from the oven and taste a piece. If you prefer to up the saltiness, finish the chips with a sprinkle of sea salt.