16th February 22:16
Baking Winter Squash
From: "Cyrus Tilley" <email@example.com>
I am looking for ways to prepare winter squash. I know I can get a great
tasting dish by heaping on butter and brown sugar, but I am hoping for
Varieties of winter squash include:
Butternut squash: Shaped like a large pear, this squash has cream-colored
skin, deep orange-colored flesh and a sweet flavor.
Acorn squash: With harvest green skin speckled with orange patches and
yellow-orange flesh, this squash has a unique flavor that is a combination
of sweet, nutty and peppery.
Hubbard squash: A larger-sized squash that can be dark green, grey-blue or
orange-red in color, the Hubbard's flavor is less sweet than many other
Turban squash: Green in color and either speckled or striped, this winter
squash has an orange-yellow flesh whose taste is reminiscent of hazelnuts.
Stuffed Winter Squash
This is a delicious main course for vegetarians at holiday time. But don't
let them have all the fun. Meat eaters will love it too.
2 large acorn or small butternut squash
Salt and pepper to taste
1 6-ounce package wild rice
4 cups vegetable stock or water
1 tablespoon butter or oil
8 ounces mushrooms, any combination of domestic and wild, sliced
1 cup chopped onions
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1/2 cup toasted nuts, any combination of pine nuts, hazelnuts, walnuts or
pecans, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 tablespoons fresh herbs such as thyme, chives or marjoram, chopped
1 whole egg and 1 egg white
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut squash in half, lengthwise, scoop out the
seeds and put it in a roasting pan, cut side down, with 1/2-inch of water.
Bake about 40 minutes or until just tender. Remove, season with salt and
pepper and lower oven to 350 degrees. Meanwhile, rinse wild rice and cook
in stock or water about 45 minutes or until tender. Drain and put in a
mixing bowl. Heat butter or oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add
mushrooms onions and celery. Cook until mushrooms wilt and onion softens,
about 5 minutes. Add to wild rice along with nuts, parsley, herbs, salt
and pepper. Add eggs and mix well.
Put stuffing into squash cavities, mounding slightly. Cover with foil and
bake in a lightly greased baking dish 25 minutes or until heated through.
Squash Ravioli with Parmesan-Sage Cream
A ravioli crimper which looks like a ridged pizza cutter makes the job of
making ravioli a lot easier.
1 to 11/2 pound pumpkin or other winter squash
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups hot skim milk
1 tablespoon fresh sage, finely chopped or 2 teaspoons dried
6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese plus additional cheese for passing
12 sheets fresh lasagna noodles, 5 by 7 inches each, enough for 36 ravioli
Cut pumpkin in half, remove seeds and place, cut side down, in a baking
pan with 1/2 inch water. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven about 40
minutes or until very tender. (Microwaving takes less than half the time.)
Scoop out flesh and puree with nutmeg, salt and pepper. You should have
about 11/4 cups.
Meanwhile, put butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Add
flour and stir a few minutes. Add milk slowly and bring to a bare simmer,
whisking constantly. Cook until thickened and you can no longer taste any
flour, about 10 minutes. Add sage, cheese and salt and pepper to taste.
Remove from heat and put plastic wrap on the surface to prevent skin from
Spoon out pumpkin puree in 2 rows across and 3 rows down on one lasagna
sheet using 1 teaspoon per ravioli. Brush another sheet with water. Gently
put the second sheet on the first, wet side down. Run a ravioli cutter
down the middle between the two rows and then across, sealing each ravioli
with a 3/8-inch border of dough all around. Without a ravioli cutter,
press down with the side of your hand along the rows between the fillings,
removing any air pockets. Seal with your fingers and cut ravioli free with
a knife Then crimp with the tines of a fork. Repeat with remaining pasta
and filling until you have 36 ravioli. (To prevent sticking put ravioli,
as you make them, on a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal.) Bring a pot
with 4 quarts of water and 1 teaspoon salt to a boil over high heat. While
water heats, gently reheat cream sauce. Add ravioli to cooking water, stir
and cook, covered, about 3 or 4 minutes. All ravioli should rise to the
surface. Drain. Put half the cream sauce into the pasta pot over
medium-low heat and add the ravioli. Add remaining sauce and gently stir,
coating all the ravioli. Serve at once with more cheese passed at the
table. Serves 4.
Cooking Tip: Fresh lasagna sheets are now available in many places where
fresh pasta is sold. If the sheets you buy are larger than those indicated
in the recipe, reduce the total number of sheets needed to get 36 ravioli.
Baked Acorn Squash Rings
We wouldn't be at all surprised if the kids suddenly started eating squash
after this way of presenting it.
1 medium acorn squash, about 11/2 pounds each
1/3 cup maple syrup mixed with 2 tablespoons bourbon or rum
Kosher salt to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Trim ends of squash and cut each crosswise
into 4 rings of equal thickness (about 3/4-inch thick). Remove seeds and
stringy material. Put rings on a shallow baking pan. Add enough water to
come halfway up the sides of the rings. Bake about 30 minutes, turning
once, or until rings are just tender. Pour off any remaining water. Brush
one side with maple syrup mixture and season with salt. Bake 5 minutes.
Repeat on the other side. Serves 4.
Cooking Tip: we like to eat the skin and all with this dish. You may want
to cook it a little longer if you plan on doing that yourself. Also, wash
the skin well before cutting the rings.
Pumpkin may seem like an all-American vegetable, but the Italians do
wondrous things with it as well as other winter squash, all of which they
call zucca. (They also do some interesting things with turkey, but that's
About 7 to 8 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cups Arborio rice
1 1/2 cups cooked butternut, acorn or cooked winter squash, cut in
6 sage leaves, minced
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 sage leaves for garnish
Heat stock to a bare simmer in a saucepan. Heat butter in a large, heavy
bottom saucepan next to it on the stove. Add onion to the butter and sauté
over medium heat until it turns translucent. Add rice, stir and add 11/2
cups of stock. When the rice has absorbed most of the liquid. Add another
11/2 cups stock. Add another 11/2 cups in the same fashion along with the
minced sage and squash. Add another 11/2 cups stock, salt and pepper to
taste. After most of the stock has been absorbed, taste rice. It should be
firm but tender. If too firm, add some or all of the remaining stock,
again tasting to discover when it is just right. Leave the risotto a
little runny before you add the cheese so it will have a nice creamy
texture. Dish into soup plates and stick a sage leaf in the middle of each
plate. Serve immediately. Serves 4 as a main course, 6 as an appetizer.
Cooking Tip: The old rule of thumb used to be that to make authentic
risotto you had to add only small amounts of liquid to rice and stir
constantly. But you can get away with less stirring and larger amounts of
liquid for each addition.
Gingered Winter Squash with Pecans and Cranberries
Adapted from The Classic Zucchini Cookbook by Nancy C. Ralston, Marynor
Jordan, and Andrea Chesman A tasty and beautiful choice for the holidays,
this recipe uses squash, some of the finest produce of the winter season -
naturally sweet and packed with nutrients - in a dish that adds unexpected
zest to a traditional favorite.
Guests will appreciate the festive presentation, studded with jewel-like
cranberries and crystallized ginger.
1 1/2 to 2 pounds butternut squash
3 - 4 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup pecan pieces
1/4 cup dried cranberries or cherries
2 tablespoons white wine or water
2 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger
Preheat the oven to 350. Lightly oil a large shallow roasting pan or half
sheet pan. Peel the squash, slice in half, and scoop out the fibers and
seeds. Cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Combine the squash, 3 tablespoons of the
melted butter, maple syrup, and ground ginger in a large bowl and toss to
coat. Arrange in a single layer in the pan. Roast for 30 minutes, until
the squash is tender, stirring every 10 minutes or so for even cooking.
While the squash is roasting, arrange the pecans in a single layer in a
small pan, such as a cake tin. Toast for 8 to 10 minutes in the oven,
until lightly colored and fragrant. Set aside. Combine the cranberries
with the wine and heat for 30 seconds in the microwave or in a small
saucepan over low heat, until the cranberries are softened. When the
squash is tender, transfer to a serving bowl. Add the pecans, cranberries,
and crystallized ginger. Toss to mix. If the squash is dry, or if you
prefer a richer-tasting dish and don't mind the additional butter, add the
remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and toss. Serve hot.
Serves 4 - 6.
Nora Pouillon's Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Toasted Seeds
Recipe by: Nora Pouillon, Nora's, Washington, DC
This recipe serves: 6
Preparation time : 15 minutes
Cooking time : 1 hour
1 butternut squash, about 2 to 2 1/2 lbs.
2 teaspoons canola oil
1 onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
4 cups 2% milk or stock
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ***in
1 pinch allspice
2 tablespoons dry sherry or Marsala wine
sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds, or reserved squash seeds
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut the butternut squash in half, sc**** out
the seeds and set them aside. Place the squash, cut side down, on a baking
sheet and bake until tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 40
minutes. Let cool about 10 minutes. While the squash is baking, heat the
oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and celery, and
cook until soft and translucent, about 3 minutes. Scoop the squash pulp
out of the skin with a spoon and put it into a large bowl. Add the onion,
celery and milk or stock. Stir to combine. Puree this mixture in a blender
in batches, being careful not to overfill the blender. Strain the blended
mixture through a colander to remove any remaining fiber or seeds. Add the
lemon juice, ***in, allspice and sherry or Marsala wine. Season with salt
and pepper to taste. Spread the cleaned, reserved seeds on a baking sheet
and toast in the oven until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Reheat the
soup, adding milk or stock if it is too thick. Divide it among 6 warmed
soup bowls and sprinkle with the toasted seeds.
Winter Squash Bisque
Source: Better Homes and Gardens
Prep: 30 min.
Cook: 50 min.
6 medium acorn squash
3 14-ounce cans chicken broth
3/4 teaspoons ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1-1/2 cups half-and-half or light cream
3/4 cup dairy sour cream (optional)
Fresh thyme sprigs (optional)
Halve squash and remove seeds. Place squash halves, cut sides down, on a
baking dish. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 30 minutes. Turn cut sides
up. Bake, covered, 20 to 25 minutes or until squash is tender. Scoop
squash pulp out of the peel using a spoon; discard peel. Place pulp in
batches in a blender container or food processor bowl. Cover and blend or
process until squash is smooth, adding some of the chicken broth if the
mixture is too thick. Stir together pureed squash and remaining chicken
broth in a large saucepan. Stir in ginger, salt, pepper, and cinnamon.
Bring mixture to boiling. Reduce heat and stir in half-and-half or light
cream. Heat through, but do not boil. If desired, garnish each serving
with sour cream and thyme sprigs. Makes 12 side-dish servings.
Linda in Tennessee
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