I’m that friend that can never be asked for a recipe. Everything that comes out of my kitchen is an intuitive creation (my partner calls it being a kitchen witch). I can’t be bothered with Pinterest recipes, and you won’t find any cookbooks in my kitchen. That said, unless it’s how to not meal plan, meal planning also isn’t something that is a cornerstone of my blog.
That said, there are some go-to equations I use in my kitchen to create the meals my family enjoys eating. Here’s the metric: I want to use as few pots or pans as possible, simple ingredients I actually keep in my fridge or pantry, and I’d like it to be low fuss. This one pan lunch is exactly that. It’s perfect for days when I want something home cooked but I don’t want to mess up the whole kitchen, or be over a stove all day.
I know it’s a running joke about how most recipe blogs tell you their life story before they get into the recipe, well, think of this as an un-recipe. I’m going to share with you my equation for this lunch, but you’ll just have to read along to find out how I put these pieces together. If that’s not your jam, I totally get it, and there are a million recipe blogs that are far more type A than I am about cooking. I wish you luck.
Let’s get started with the ingredients.
Yup. All you really need for this recipe is some type of squash (I’m using a medium/large butternut), a medium sized onion, and two heads of garlic. Full disclosure, with this amount of ingredients it produced two large pasta bowls of roasted vegetables. So, play around with the amounts as needed. This was also the perfect amount to fill my cast iron skillet. You could easily swap out sweet potatoes (my go-to in spring/summer), acorn squash, or another starchy vegetable for the squash. But, I have to say it was pretty divine with this combination.
Before we get to prepping the vegetables, put a clean cast iron skillet in a cool oven and preheat the oven and pan to 425 degrees. We want it toasty when it’s time to cook.
From here, I peeled and cubed the squash, chopped the onion in large chunks, and cut the top off the garlic. Leave it all in the head, just cut the top off of the cloves.
Once your vegetables are chopped, your pan will probably be ready. Remove it from the oven and place it on a protected surface (remember cast iron is hot from the oven). From here I drizzled some olive oil in the pan. Coconut oil is also great for this.
From here, put all your onion and squash in the pan. drizzle with more oil and toss with a spatula or spoon to coat evenly. Salt this mixture liberally.
Once your vegetables are coated with oil and salt, create two little nooks to place your heads of garlic in the pan. I then slowly drizzle olive oil into the head of garlic (you’ll have to do this slowly as it sinks in around the cloves), and salt liberally. I usually don’t add any seasonings other than salt before roasting in the oven. I don’t want to burn any herbs or spices, and prefer to add them at the end. Of course, follow your hearts desire when it comes to seasoning the dish.
Put the pan in the oven, and let it roast until golden and soft. For me that was about 45 minutes.
When I removed the pan from the oven, this is what it looked like! I divided the squash and onion between two pasta bowls and used a pair of tongs to squeeze the cloves out of the bulbs of garlic. They came out soft, fragrant, and oh so sweet.
To season the dish, I added some cracked pepper, a tablespoon of maple syrup, as well as some fresh chives.
I returned the clean pan to the stove top over medium/high heat and added a modest swirl of olive oil. I cracked in two eggs careful not to break the yolks and covered the cast iron pan with a glass lid until the bottoms were cooked and the tops were just barely set. Then placed them over the bowl of squash, onion, and garlic.
And there you go! My easy one pan lunch (that makes an excellent dinner as well! If you play with the recipe be sure to let me know in the comments!
Your friendly kitchen witch,