As the host of America’s longest-running cooking show, Ciao Italia, you can bet Mary Ann knows a thing or two about simple but delicious cooking—which is exactly what we’re all looking for to round out the holiday table. This butternut squash with toasty hazelnuts and nutty, sage-infused brown butter brings out the best in classic New England ingredients with Mary Ann's traditional Italian touch. Just be warned, this humble vegetable side might give your starring bird a run for the money as everyone’s favorite dish.


  • 3 tablespoons Filippo Berio extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup warm honey
  • 1 medium butternut squash (peeled and seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks)
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh sage leaves
  • 1/2 cup toasted hazelnuts or walnuts


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. Combine the oil, honey and salt in a large bowl. Add chunks of squash and toss to coat well.

3. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 25-30 minutes, or until tender.

4. Meanwhile, melt the butter in small saucepan and add the sage leaves. Turn off heat and let steep. When squash is cooked, toss with the butter mixture in a bowl; sprinkle with nuts and serve.

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©Ciao Italia 2015