I halved and seeded three squashes, sliced them ½ inch thick—skin and all—and tossed them with oil and salt. After spreading the slices into an even layer on a baking sheet, I covered the sheet with aluminum foil and placed it on the middle rack of a 425-degree oven. The foil trapped steam and helped the slices cook evenly without becoming desiccated. After half an hour, the slices were tender, so I removed the foil. Within minutes, any residual moisture evaporated and the starches and sugars on the surface of the squash began to brown. After 15 minutes, I flipped the slices and then let the second side turn deep golden brown, which took about 15 minutes longer.
These squash slices were tender and moist, but I was sure I could speed up the cooking and coax an even fuller, richer flavor from the delicata. I moved the oven rack to the lowest position so that the baking sheet would be closer to the heat source. This shaved 15 minutes off the total time and deepened the browning.
To reinforce the delicata’s unique nuttiness, I dotted it with butter for the final 10 minutes—enough time for it to brown with no risk of burning. These tender, golden slices looked gorgeous, and each bite featured a slightly resilient strip of skin and toasty squash flavor—all without breaking a sweat.