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All That Squashes


Sweet and Nutty Baked Acorn Squash
This recipe came to fruition purely out of creativity. My office mate gave a butternut and 2 acorn squashes one day. With no experience cooking them, my friend and I decided to mix in our fav ingredients and bake them like how we would cook pumpkin. It turned out great. I believe this recipe would work for almost all squashes.

Ingredients:
2 small acorn squashes, 2 tbs olive oil, 0.5 cup toasted and chopped nuts (ie walnuts and pecans), a dash of ground cinnamon, a dash of ground ginger, a dash of ground nutmeg, 1 tb maple syrup, salt and pepper to taste.

Procedures:
1. Wash and pat dry acorn squashes. With a sharp, heavy knife, cut them into halves. Remove membrane and seeds. Shave off the skin and ends before cutting them to bite-size (1 to 1.5in) cubes
2. Preheat oven to 400F 
3. Line a baking sheet with Aluminum foil. Place the squash cubes on the sheet
4. Distribute olive oil, spices and salt over the cubes. Toss gently so the squash cubes are covered with spices and oil
5. Place baking sheet in the oven and bake for 30 mins. Toss lightly and bake for another 15 mins or until the cubes are fork tender
6. Remove baking sheet from oven and set it on the stove top
7. Add maple syrup and nuts. Gently toss to incorporate
8. Serve hot with your fav meats

Tips:
You can substitute maple syrup with organic honey. You can reduce/ eliminate the spices if you want a simpler taste and flavor. And add more honey/ syrup if you like it sweeter.


Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Great for a cold fall day

Ingredients:
1 medium size butternut squash, 1 apple, 1 onion, 2 tbs olive oil, 2 dried bay leaves, 1-inch cube ginger root, 1.5 cups low sodium chicken stock, 1 cup water, 0.5 cup milk, and desired sprinkle of ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, cumin, and salt and ground black pepper to taste

Procedures:
1. Preheat oven to 450 degF
2. Poke holes all around the butternut squash. Microwave the squash for 5 minutes so it softens. Cut squash to large chunks. Slice off skin
3. Cut onion and apple to large chunks. Cut ginger to slices
4. Place vegetables and apple chunks onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Toss chunks in oil. Sprinkle salt and ground black pepper. Place a sheet of Al foil over the chunks

5. Bake for 20 mins. Stir the chunks around and continue to bake for another 10 mins. Remove the Al foil and roast the chunks for another 5 mins or until they soften
6. Heat chicken stock over a pot. Add the chunks in the broth and season with desired amount of ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and cumin. Bring the mixture to a boil and remove from heat
7. Add milk and puree mixture with an immersion blender until the soup is smooth to your desired likeness. If you like a creamier taste, add more milk
8. Serve with a hunk of crusty bread




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