Recipe type: Side Dish
I’ve overheard a few shoppers asking about how to cook squash. We’ve already had a recipe for Butternut Squash Soup, but what to do with the pesky acorn, delicata and spaghetti squash is the topic for today.
- The simplest way to cook these squash is to roast them in the oven. To cook an acorn squash simply cut in half, scoop out the seeds, and place cut-side up in a baking pan or casserole. Add a teaspoon of butter and a tablespoon of maple syrup (or substitute a teaspoon of brown sugar) to the cavity each half and place in a 350 degree oven for about a half-hour. To serve, place on a plate and give each eater a spoon with which to scoop out the flesh. It’s super-easy, very nutritious and tasty and children almost always love eating squash cooked in this manner.
- To cook a delicate squash you can follow the instructions above, of course, or you can stuff the squash to create a tasty and beautiful main-dish meal component. Cut the squash lengthwise and scoop out the seeds, and then stuff the cavity with any kind of stuffing mix you might prefer. 350 degrees in the oven for about 45 minutes and you will have a delicious main course. Once again, it is eaten by scooping out the flesh and the filling with a spoon. If you are looking for recipes for stuffing mixes, try searching for ‘stuffed squash’ or ‘stuffed pepper’ at Epicurious, which provides some really tasty-reading recipes: http://www.epicurious.com/.
- You can also peel winter squash, chop into a large dice, and cook in the oven (again, at 350 degrees) with butter, cider, stock, herbs, etc. They are extraordinarily versatile vegetables and can be adapted to many recipes that normally use potatoes and other root vegetables.
- Finally, what to do with that spaghetti squash? It is such a fantastic vegetable – so healthy and versatile, and kids love it because it’s like pasta. To prepare a spaghetti squash cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and roast cut-side down on a cookie pan for about 45 minutes. Allow the squash to cool sufficiently that you can handle it, and then hold the squash piece while you rake a fork through the interior flesh. You’ll create a wonderful pile of bright yellow spaghetti-like strands that can then be used as you would pasta. Top with your favorite sauce and you have a delicious low-calorie, high-vitamin supper. You could also mix with sauce and a few bison or lamb sausages from the market, bake in the oven for a half-hour, and have a delicious main-course casserole. Add a crisp fall lettuce salad and you have a yummy and healthy dinner. You can even sauté the squash in butter or olive oil, add sage leaves and pepper, top with grated parmesan cheese to use as a vegetable side dish – the perfect accompaniment to a roasted chicken or grilled bison steak!