winter squash

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn her book, Local Flavors, Deborah Madison describes how to bibbittybobbityboo a Rouge vif d’Etampes squash into a glorious bowl of soup. This is a simple yet extremely elegant way to prepare and present a meal that we like to suggest to CSA friends and customers at the farm stand come fall squash harvest. Check out this blog from Territorial Seed, with a scrumptious recipe for Cinderella squash tureen. Grab your magic wand, harness your inner Faerie Godmother.

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Pumpkin pie  Winter Luxury should be baked whole, pierced for a few tiny vent holes, stem trimmed. Bake at 350°F until it “slumps” and softens after an hour or so. If you wish, you can cut a lid, remove the gunk and seeds, and replace the lid loosely before baking (this method yields a drier pie). The cooked pumpkin is hot! Be careful when you cut out or remove the lid. Seeds and strings, if left inside, come out easily. Take a large spoon and simply scoop the pumpkin out like ice cream. The flesh peels away from the desiccated rind without a shudder and leaves it flat. Puree the flesh in a blender, adding liquid if needed. This recipe is adapted from Grandma Ivah’s Pumpkin Pie, posted by Seed Savers Exchange.

  • 1 ½ cup cooked pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ cup milk
  • 2/3 cup evaporated milk

Preheat oven to 400°F. Prepare pie plate with a single pie crust using your favorite pie crust recipe. Par-bake the crust or not, however you prefer (pie peas, parchment paper, aluminum foil, it’s up to you). Mix pumpkin puree, sugar, salt, and spices. In a separate bowl combine eggs, milk, and evaporated milk. Blend milk mixture into pumpkin mixture (texture will be very thin).  Pour into pie crust. Bake for 50 minutes or until the center of the pie has begun to set.  The pie will continue to set as it cools to room temperature.

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Roasted Delicata Squash with Rosemary Delicata squash have a wonderfully tender skin which can been eaten after roasting.

  • 2 or 3 Delicata squash, sliced in 1/2″ slices
  • 1 T finely chopped fresh Rosemary
  • 1 T Olive Oil
  • 1 t Sea Salt
  • 1/2 t fresh cracked Black Pepper

Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss all ingredients on a sheet pan. Spread out the squash slices in a single layer. Roast in the oven for 30-35 minutes or until soft and slightly golden. Serve warm.

Kale and sausage stuffed Delicata or Candystick squash

  • 3 medium-sized delicata squash(or Candy stick), halved and seeded
  • 1 1/4 pound Italian style sausage (or veggie substitute)
  • 3 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch kale, chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 medium-sized yellow onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp dried sage
  • dash of cayenne pepper
  • dash of nutmeg
  • 2 tbs cooking sherry or lastnight’s leftover red wine
  • 3 tbs chicken stock (or water)
  • 3/4 cup gruyere cheese
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375.  Drizzle olive oil and salt and pepper onto halved squash.  Place cut side up in the oven for 25 minutes. While squash is roasting prepare your filling.  Heat olive oil in a large skillet.  Add sausage and onion.  Cook for about 10 minutes (until sausage is cooked through) stirring and breaking up the sausage.  Add the garlic, sage, nutmeg, and cayenne. Stir.  Add kale, sherry/wine, and stock.  Stir.  Cover pan and simmer for about 3-5 minutes until kale is starting to wilt and moisture is evaporating. Remove filling from stove and let cook for a few minutes.  Add cheese and stir.  Scoop filling into each squash.  Top with breadcrumbs and bake in the oven at 375 for 20 more minutes.  Serve warm.

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Squash, Coconut and Chili Curry 

  • 1.5-2 lb squash (butternut or kabocha)
  • 2 TBS olive oil, sunflower oil or butter
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2-4 mild or medium red chilis, de-seeded and sliced
  • 1 good spoonful of your favorite curry powder or paste to taste
  • 1 can (14fl oz) coconut milk
  • A squeeze of lime or lemon juice
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peel and de-seed the squash, then cut into bite-sized chunks. Heat the oil in large saucepan over medium heat and add the onion to cook gently for about 10 minutes. Stir in the curry powder or paste and cook for a minute or two. Add the squash, with some salt and pepper, and stir well to coat it in the spicy, onion mixture. Cook for a further minute or so. Pour in the coconut milk, stir well and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook gently for 20-25 minutes, stirring carefully every now and then. You want the squash to be perfectly tender and yielding, but not mushy or falling apart. The cooking time will depend on the squash variety. When the squash is cooked (test it by poking with a fork), taste the curry and add more salt and pepper if desired.  Finish with a good spritz of lime or lemon juice. Ladle into bowls and serve with rice or lentils, naan or flat breads. Decorate with cilantro and a spoonful of plain yogurt.
Any Squash Chana Masala this is a soul and belly warming recipe adapted from Dishing Up the Dirt, from Tumbleweed Farm in Oregon.
  • 1 medium sized squash (ie Sundream, Buttercup, Oregon Homestead Sweetmeat) peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2-3 medium potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2 Tablespoons coconut oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1-2 Tablespoons garam masala (taste and adjust as you like)
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • pinch of black pepper
  • 3 1/2 cups diced tomatoes (canned)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • fresh cilantro for serving

Preheat the oven to 425F. Toss the cubed squash and potatoes with 1 Tablespoon of the coconut oil (if the oil is in solid form warm it on the stovetop for a minute or two until it’s liquid) Place the veggies on a parchment lined baking sheet and roast in the oven until tender and lightly browned on the edges, about 20 minutes. Toss halfway through cooking.

Heat the remaining 1 Tablespoon of oil in a large pot. Add the onion and sauté until it softens up a bit and becomes fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, ginger, garam masala, paprika, sugar, salt and pepper and continue to cook for 1 minute longer.

Stir in the roasted veggies, tomatoes, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Taste test the stew and adjust seasonings as needed.

Divide between bowls and top each bowl with a little cilantro. Enjoy with a glass of red wine and good company.

Roasted (any squash) Soup
  • 1 medium to large Oregon Homestead Sweetmeat(or Marina de Chiogga, or Galeux d’Eysines, or Blue Kuri, or…) squash, or 2 buttercup squash
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • olive oil for sautéing
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400°F. With a sharp knife, cut the squash in half. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits. Place cut side down in a baking dish and place uncovered in oven. Roast until squash is soft, testing with a toothpick through the skin in the thickest part (the neck). While the squash is roasting, prepare the onion and celery. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil and sauté the vegetables until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the cumin and cook for another 2 minutes. If the squash is ready, remove it from the oven and scoop out the flesh into the saucepan. If not, remove the vegetables from the heat and set aside until the squash is ready. After combining the squash and vegetables, add the stock. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until the texture is creamy and smooth. This can also be done in a blender, but allow the ingredients to cool beforehand. Reheat the soup after blending. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Eat!

And while we’re on soups, you should make special note: Winter Squash Soup with Red Chile and Mint, another one from Deborah Madison.

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Storage tip:  Store in a cool, dark, well-ventilated place. Many of the varieties we grow are super long keepers, great for squash soup in February.

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