When I was in high school, I was invited over to a friend's house for dinner and Hasselback potatoes were on the menu. I remember being so impressed with what looked like a dish out of a fancy restaurant.
The potato was peeled, then cut into thin slices that went almost, but not quite, all the way through before being basted with butter and roasted until golden brown. The result was an accordionlike potato with tons of crispy edges and a tender, fluffy inside.
Hasselback potatoes have been around a long time. The name comes from a restaurant in Stockholm named Hasselbacken, where the recipe for Hasselback potatoes was introduced in the 1940s.
Now, the technique of "hasselbacking" has entered the culinary lexicon and it isn't just used on potatoes anymore. You can find recipes for Hasselback zucchini, butternut squash, tomatoes, chicken breasts — the list goes on.
While it looks difficult to do, it's actually quite easy, especially with this pro tip: Place a wooden spoon on each side of whatever you're slicing. This way, the knife will hit the wood handles, stopping you from accidentally cutting all the way through.
For this week's recipe, we're giving the Hasselback treatment to kielbasa sausage, which might be my favorite use of the technique.
The sausage is thinly sliced about two thirds of the way through and brushed with a honey-mustard glaze. While the glaze adds loads of flavor, it also creates an extra crispiness to the edge of each cut. And because the sausage stays together, maintaining its original shape, it remains juicy on the inside.
I'm using only one U-shaped link of the sausage in this recipe, but you could easily increase it to two if you have hungry meat eaters at the table.
Butternut squash slices and wedges of red onion are roasted alongside the sausage, making this a lovely and delicious one-pan fall meal that's easy to make and sure to impress.
Roasted Hasselback Kielbasa With Butternut Squash and Onions
Serves 3 to 4.
Hasselbacking the kielbasa, slicing it not-quite-all-the-way through into thin, even layers, creates loads of crispy edges while keeping the inside of the sausage juicy. Roasting alongside butternut squash and red onions wedges will make this your new favorite one-pan meal. From Meredith Deeds.
• 2 tbsp. Dijon mustard, preferable country-style
• 2 tbsp. honey
• 1 tbsp. olive oil
• 2 tsp. white wine vinegar
• 1 lb. fully cooked, smoked kielbasa
• 1 (2 1/2 to 3 lb.) butternut squash, peeled, halved, seeds removed and cut crosswise into 1/2-in. slices
• 1 large red onion, peeled and cut into 8 wedges (stem end attached to hold wedges together)
• 2 tbsp. melted butter
• 2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
• 1/2 tsp. salt
• 1/4 tsp. pepper
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat a large-rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard, honey, oil and vinegar. Set aside.
Slice kielbasa crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices, being careful to cut only two-thirds of the way through. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the butternut squash, onion, butter, thyme, salt and pepper. Gently toss to coat and arrange on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the vegetables are just starting to brown. Remove from oven and use a spatula to turn over the vegetables.
Raise oven heat to 450 degrees.
Brush the vegetables with the mustard mixture. Place kielbasa on top of the vegetables and brush with mustard mixture. Roast for 10 minutes. Brush mixture on kielbasa again with mustard mixture and cook for another 10 minutes, or until squash is lightly browned. Remove from oven. Brush kielbasa one last time with mustard mixture and serve.
Meredith Deeds is a cookbook author and food writer from Edina. Reach her at email@example.com. Follow her on Instagram at @meredithdeeds.