Butternut Walnut and Sage Gratin

It's getting colder and days are noticeably shorter, time for comfort food. In my books, nothing says. "Comfort food" better than butternut. Starting with peeling, when most cucurbita are knobbly and so hard to peel, butternut is as smooth as an apple. Then there is the nutty taste and the creamy texture of the jolly bright orange flesh.
With such a distinctive taste, it's not too hard to pair butternut with other food, almost a given really. For this gratin, I chose walnuts though the original recipe indicates hazelnuts. Sage provides an earthy addition, use sage sparingly as too much will overpower the whole dish.
150ml double cream 150 ml milk
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 to 4 large sage leaves
40g melting cheese, grated, I used Wensleydale, parmesan or cheddar are also an option
750g butternut squash, peeled, cube and steam to soft
30g walnut, roughly chopped
20g breadcrumbs

Tip: The butternut will absorb a lot of liquid while cooking so don't worry if it starts by looking very wet.

Preheat the oven to 190C.
Peel, cube and steam to soft the butternut squash
Mash when cooked
Meanwhile, mix in a large bowl all the other ingredients except the breadcrumbs and cheese.
Mix mash and creamy mixture, season well
Transfer to gratin dish, cover with breadcrumbs and cheese, top with foil
Cook for 30 minutes coved, uncover and cook for another 30 minutes.

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