When making fried butternut squash, it's best to cut the squash into pieces that are even in size. The oil used for frying should be hot but not too hot. A cook should fry the squash until it is soft and browned but shouldn't cook it too long. Seasoning such as salt and pepper can also improve the flavor of the squash. Most cooks prefer to use a skillet to make pan-fried butternut squash rather than deep frying the squash.
Cutting the squash may be one of the trickiest parts of making fried butternut squash. To cut the squash into equal sized cubes, the cook should first cut the squash in half, separating the thin neck from the bulbous bottom part. Each half of the butternut squash should then be sliced into half, revealing the seeds.
Before he or she can cube the squash, the cook needs to scoop out the seeds. Although the seeds are edible, they do not belong in a dish of fried butternut squash. After removing the seeds, the cook needs to peel the squash. Butternut squash has a tough peel that is difficult to chew and digest and is best removed. Once the squash is peeled, the cook can proceed to cutting it into cubes. One-inch (2.54 cm) cubes are ideal.
The oil needs to be heated in a skillet before the squash can be fried. Ideally, the oil will have a high smoke point so that the cook can heat it high enough to cook the squash without the oil developing off flavors. Canola, peanut, and sunflower oil are good choices.
A cook needs to coat only the bottom of the pan in oil, as she is not deep-frying the squash. The oil is ready when it ripples slightly. The squash should then be added to the pan. To brown the side of the butternut squash, the cook should let it sit for about a minute before stirring or tossing it around the pan.
The cook can add seasonings of his choice to the fried butternut squash. Simple seasonings include salt and pepper. Some cooks may wish to add fresh or dried herbs, such as sage or thyme, to the cooking squash.
The fried butternut squash is ready when it is caramelized or brown all over. It shouldn't be too dark or crispy on the exterior, as that means it is burnt. The squash should be tender enough that the cook can easily poke it with a fork. Usually, frying the squash takes about 10 minutes.