Italian Butternut Squash Gratin

I saw this recipe on the Betty Crocker website and had to try it! I usually think of Butternut squash prepared in a sweet way, so this savory, garlicky version intrigued me. Every bite was delicious, tender, and covered in a crisp, flavorful crust of cheese and breadcrumbs!
Italian Butternut Squash Gratin
Serves 6

1 butternut squash (2 1/2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
1/4 cup butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease a 13x9 inch glass baking dish.
2. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, add garlic, and cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently, until garlic is soft and butter is infused with garlic flavor. (Don't let butter brown!)
3. In a small bowl, mix panko, cheese, and 1 tablespoon of the butter-garlic mixture.
4. Toss squash cubes in the remaining butter-garlic mixture and then sprinkle with salt, pepper and the bread crumb mixture.
5. Bake uncovered 30 to 40 minutes or until squash is tender when pierced with fork. Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees; and bake another 5 to 10 minutes longer, until light brown and crispy. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley and serve immediately!

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