This is a versatile filling–it can indeed be the filling for a single or double-crusted pie, or the filling for a cobbler or crisp, or eaten just as (this last is my preference). Bake it for half an hour for a cobbler/crisp, or 50 minutes or so for a double-crust pie (375° F). Most people, I’ve learned, have their favorite recipes for crusts, so I’m not including a recipe here. (At this time of year, pie crust recipes are ubiquitous anyway.)

6 T butter, or less if you like
3 1/2 c peeled, cubed butternut squash
2 1/2 c unpeeled, cored, cubed apples
4 T sweetener–honey, sugar, maple syrup, agave, brown rice syrup…
1 vanilla bean, split or 2 t vanilla extract
water, if necessary
1/4 c chopped nuts–pecans, walnuts, almonds
1/4 t salt

1. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the squash and apples. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.

2. Reduce the heat and add the sweetener and vanilla bean. Stir to combine. If the mixture seems very dry at this point you can add a splash of water to keep the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the skillet.

3. Cover the skillet and cook the squash and apples for about 30 minutes, until they have become very soft. Remove from heat and cool. Remove vanilla bean and stir in the nuts and salt.

Note: If making a double-crusted pie, make sure to make steam vents in the top of the crust.