Squash Five Ways

  in Blog

Local winter squash is abundant right now and will last approximately through the end of the year. Now is the time to whip up something delicious with locally-grown squash. Here are 5 ways you can cook with squash:

  1. quickbread
  2. stew
  3. casserole
  4. risotto
  5. stuffed

Spiced Squash Bread

1 cup cooked, mashed squash
2 eggs
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup water
1 cup natural cane sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
½ cup chopped pecans

  1. Heat oven to 350. Grease a loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the butternut squash puree, eggs, butter, water, vanilla, and sugars until thoroughly combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cardamom.
  3. Stir the dry ingredients into the butternut squash mixture. Mix just until incorporated; Be sure not to over mix. Pour into the loaf pan and sprinkle with the nuts. Bake for 55-6o minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Chilean Bean Corn & Squash Stew

1 quart chicken or vegetable broth
One 1 1/2- pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 cups corn
1 15-ounce can kidney beans, drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil or 2 teaspoons dried
2 tablespoons coconut or olive oil
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 bell peppers (1 green and 1 red), chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons paprika
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
optional garnishes: lime wedges and hot sauce  

  1. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add onions, peppers, and spices and cook for about 8 minutes. Add the broth and squash and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the squash is tender.
  2. Stir in the corn, beans, salt and pepper and cook for another 5 minutes.  Ladle into bowls and garnish with remaining basil, lime wedges, and serve with hot sauce.

Spaghetti Squash Casserole

1 spaghetti squash
1 pound ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 14.5 oz can can diced tomatoes
¼ cup tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
sea salt and black pepper to taste
1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese

  1. Heat oven to 400° . Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Place cut side down in a baking dish and add ½ cup of water. Bake for about 45 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork. Reduce oven to 350° . Remove squash  from oven and let cool; scoop squash out of shell, separating the strands with a fork. Spread in a greased 1 ½ quart baking dish.
  2. While squash is baking, cook beef, onion, and garlic until meat is browned and onion is tender, about 10 minutes. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cook for 5 minutes. Spread sauce over squash, sprinkle with the cheese, and bake, uncovered, for 25 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Serves 6.

Butternut Squash Risotto

2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 pounds butternut squash
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 1/2 cups chicken broth, heated
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Sea salt and white pepper
Optional:  chopped fresh sage

  1. Peel the squash. Cut in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Cut squash into ½ inch thick slabs and then cut slabs into ½ inch dice.    
  2. In a heavy-bottom saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the squash cubes and shallot and cook, stirring often, about 8 minutes until softened.
  3. Stir in the rice. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until wine has evaporated, about 2 minutes.
  4. Reduce heat to medium and add 1/2 cup hot broth mixture. Cook, stirring, until almost all liquid is absorbed. Continue adding hot broth to the rice, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly, until liquid is absorbed before adding more broth. This will take about 30 minutes. It’s labor intensive but it will be worth it!
  5. Stir in Parmesan, sage, and sea salt and white pepper to taste.

Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Stuffing

3 acorn squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 small onion, finely chopped
4 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried sage
2 cups cooked wild rice mix (1 cup uncooked)
2/3 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
1/4 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt, black pepper to taste

  1. Heat the oven to 450°F. Place squash cut side up on a baking sheet, brush 1 tablespoon of the melted butter over the tops and insides of the squash halves, drizzle with maple syrup, and sprinkle on salt and pepper. Bake until fork tender, about 25 to 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, place 1 tablespoon of the melted butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and celery, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, about 10 minutes. Stir in the herbs and cook 1 more minute. Remove from heat and stir in the rice, pecans, cranberries, and 1 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Divide the rice filling among the roasted squash halves and drizzle the remaining tablespoon of butter over the top. Bake until the squash is completely tender and browned and the filling is heated through, about 25 minutes.