Phew…those cinnamon rolls were sooooooo good.  I obviously bake a lot, but usually I have a serving of whatever I have made and then force the rest on my husband or other family, just my way of “keeping things in moderation”.  Not the cinnamon rolls though.  I couldn’t stop thinking about them and for two days in a row, I ate nothing but cinnamon rolls for breakfast and lunch.

Baker Emily: CINNAMON ROLLS!!!

Registered Dietitian Emily: Hmmmm….are your pants getting a little tight there?

Baker Emily: Whatev,  I can’t help it.

RD Emily: You have problems.  Carbohydrate problems. Do you remember what vegetables are?

Ahem.  This may or may not have been the dialogue between my conflicting selves this week…

My two interests (and now careers) don’t get along.

Luckily, I can usually please them both, and after my cinnamon roll binge, I was ready for a well-rounded and wholesome breakfast.  How about steal cut oats, almond milk, and pecans, topped off with a healthy dose of warm apples and butternut squash?!  Sounds like pretty much the most complete meal ever!

Letting the squash and apples dance together in the pan for a good while allows their flavors to blend and breaks them down into a delightful compote.  Sugar is added to the mixture, but the final product is not overly sweet making it a great addition to hot cereals, but would likely be nice folded into some quinoa or on top of a nice piece of grilled chicken or pork.

I suppose for now the RD in me wins and I will be living off this wholesome combo for breakfast and lunch for the next few days (just don’t tell her the other Emily loves it too)!

Apple and Squash Compote

Makes about 3 cups

Adapted slightly from Good to the Grain by Kim Boyce

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

10 ounces butternut squash (about 2 cups), peeled and cute into 1/2-to 3/4-inch pieces

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 pound Granny Smith apples, peeled and cut into 1/2-to 3/4-inch pieces

1/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Melt the butter in a 12-inch saute pan over a medium-high flame.

Add the squash and salt to the pan and toss to coat with the butter.  Listen for the sizzle – this is a clue that your flame is hot enough – and adjust the heat as necessary.  Cook the squash for 3 minutes without stirring or moving the pan; if the butter is browning, turn down the heat slightly.

Toss the squash and cook for 3 minutes more, again without stirring or moving the pan.  The squash should be browning on the edges.

Add the apples, sugar, and cinnamon to the pan and toss to coat in butter.  Let the pan sit for 1 minutes.  Turn your flame down to medium-low and cook for about 10 minutes, until the apples and squash begin turning translucent and there is ample liquid in the pan.  Increase the flame to medium and cook for about 20 minutes, tossing every 2 minutes, until the apples and squash are dark and caramelized and have absorbed all the syrup.  If the pan becomes dry before the apples and squash are tender, add the water 1 tablespoon at a time.  This compote is best served hot from the pan, but can be kept refrigerated for 1 week, just reheat before serving.