Butternut Squash, Cranberry and Goat Cheese Crostini

I just love these! They are such a fun twist to the variety of ways to make a crostini. I have gotten a great deal of mileage out of this recipe this fall and winter. I know it is almost spring, but it's not too late to try this. It's a simple and easily prepared and I think you will like it too.

Butternut Squash, Cranberry and Goat Cheese Crostini

2 ½ tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 (12”) sourdough baguette, thinly slice (1/4” pieces)
3 to 4 ounces goat cheese, softened
1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
 1 ½ cups peeled and diced butternut squash
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ cups dried cranberries, roughly chopped
2 ½ tablespoons minced thyme
Salt and Pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 375F.  Brush each side of sliced baguette with oil and season lightly with salt and pepper. Bake for 5 minutes, flip each crostini, and continue to bake for an additional 3 to 4 minutes.  Remove from oven and set aside.
For topping: Pour oil into a heavy bottom skillet and place over medium-high heat. Add shallots and sauté for 2 minutes.  Add squash and continue to sauté for 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, add garlic and 2 tablespoons of thyme and stir together; season with salt and pepper. Cook mixture for 5 minutes, add cranberries. Continue to cook for 4 or 5 minutes for until squash is fork tender. Stir in remaining thyme and adjust seasonings.

To assemble: Spread a small amount of goat cheese onto each crostini and top with a spoonful or two of squash mixture. Serve.
NOTE: A couple of things I do - I cut the butternut squash into 1/4" dice. I also cover the skillet after I add the cranberries. I find it a better way to finish cooking the squash. I have substituted soften cream cheese for the goat cheese and it worked well.

*I honestly don't remember where I found this recipe so I cannot do due diligence other than to say someone "out there" gets the credit.*