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Winter squash recipes


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For a French twist, scoop the flesh out of the roasted squash then puree in a food processor with some warm heavy cream. As suggested above, I like to add some curry at this stage. Then I strain it back into a stockpot and keep it over a low heat. I'll add some chicken or vegetable stock to keep it fairly thin and not as thick as a soup only using cream. Now for an indulgence, I like to add a few chunks of foie gras. It melts into the soup and gives a whisper of duck liver. The foie gras works well with the curry flavor.

Another way to add flavor is to garnish the soup with a flavored oil like parsley oil or cilantro oil.

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I've been meaning to try the recipe that Pierogi in the Recipes that Rock thread for Winter Squash Soup with Red Chili and Mint from the Greens cookbook. I got a butternut squash in my CSA box last week and even bought some mint but couldn't get into soup-making with this weekend's 80 degree days. The flavor combination sounds great.

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I've always hated squash. However, I am trying to learn to expand my tastes and the above ideas rally interest me. The flavors listed are new to me in combination with squash, so I am going to start mixing and matching and trying to find a mix I enjoy.

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Roasting them should boost the flavour, but I find that winter squashes mostly contribute body/texture, sort of like potatoes.

I use them in a winter squash and chestnut soup (chicken stock, roasted squash, caramelized chestnuts), in a winter squash, lamb, and white bean stew, which I season with cayenne and various Indian spices, or roasted and mashed like potatoes (and seasoned with Indian or Latin American spices).

I used to use pumpkin, but now primarily use hokkaido squash, because it's the easiest to get locally; as you pointed out, winter squashes are on the bland side, which makes them fairly easy to interchange.

ETA: My boyfriend just reminded me that we also once used a blend of winter squash, shredded lamb, and black pepper as a ravioli filling, and it was an extremely good combination.

Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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Thanks for all the thoughtful responses.

So far, the blended squash/pepper puree (while I had the oven on, I did the peppers at the same time too) is a bit tastier than I'd feared, but not quite as rich as I'd hoped. Yes, it is a lot of peppers, because that was what I was fantasizing about this week--ripe, roasted peppers. So they were roasted then peeled and added to the puree. When I pull out the puree tomorrow to finish the soup, I'll try some of the suggestions in this thread on small quantities to see where I want to go to deepen the flavor. I'm quite intrigued by the idea of ginger/lemon/curry/fish sauce because I was thinking this time I'd finish the soup with basil rather than sage.

And need to get some fresh ginger on the way home from work.

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Thanks for all the thoughtful responses.

So far, the blended squash/pepper puree (while I had the oven on, I did the peppers at the same time too) is a bit tastier than I'd feared, but not quite as rich as I'd hoped. Yes, it is a lot of peppers, because that was what I was fantasizing about this week--ripe, roasted peppers. So they were roasted then peeled and added to the puree. When I pull out the puree tomorrow to finish the soup, I'll try some of the suggestions in this thread on small quantities to see where I want to go to deepen the flavor. I'm quite intrigued by the idea of ginger/lemon/curry/fish sauce because I was thinking this time I'd finish the soup with basil rather than sage.

And need to get some fresh ginger on the way home from work.

Regarding the lack of richness: Wet peppers (impatience has caused that problem in some things I've cooked)?

You could add some fat, too. I keep a pot of mixed fat (duck/lamb/chicken/whatever) in the refrigerator, and tossing a teaspoon into a gallon or so of soup does wonders. Ginger is always brilliant with winter squash.

Michaela, aka "Mjx"
Manager, eG Forums
mscioscia@egstaff.org

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I think you've done the right thing from the start - roasting instead of steaming or boiling. I find that any kind of water-based cooking is death to squash that is already insipid. Roasting helps to concentrate the flavours that are present.

I find that the microwave does a good job if you're going to mash/puree it. It cooks quickly, and doesn't add any extra water. If you need to concentrate it further, you can put the mash in a skillet on high heat (constant stirring!) and cook out some of the water.

I too like the addition of curry, garam masala (or even just a couple of its components), salt, butterfat (either butter or cream), a pinch of sugar, dried fruits, and nuts.

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Thanks for all the thoughtful responses.

So far, the blended squash/pepper puree (while I had the oven on, I did the peppers at the same time too) is a bit tastier than I'd feared, but not quite as rich as I'd hoped. Yes, it is a lot of peppers, because that was what I was fantasizing about this week--ripe, roasted peppers. So they were roasted then peeled and added to the puree. When I pull out the puree tomorrow to finish the soup, I'll try some of the suggestions in this thread on small quantities to see where I want to go to deepen the flavor. I'm quite intrigued by the idea of ginger/lemon/curry/fish sauce because I was thinking this time I'd finish the soup with basil rather than sage.

And need to get some fresh ginger on the way home from work.

If you smash the fresh ginger into a paste and saute it in ghee (or melted butter) with the spices and then add the lime or lemon juice (and a bit of grated peel, the flavors will "bloom" and then you add them to the soup.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Ok, 'finished' the soup last night. I sauteed up the leeks in olive oil and butter, then added the puree. But the squash/pepper puree was so thick that it was very difficult to reheat, and eventually I caved in by adding some chicken stock and water--but I boiled them first for a few minutes with some dried lemongrass, dried galangal, and mace. I also added several bunches of basil, dry jack cheese more or less per the recipe, a bunch of toasted pine nuts, a couple of lemons' worth of juice, and a large handful of hot New Mexico chili powder.

I forgot to get more fresh ginger, which in retrospect would probably have been the perfect lift to the finished soup, not enough to conflict with the umami-rich cheese, but just enough to highlight the other flavors.

Still, all in all a very tasty product, with remarkably high heat capacity--scorched the heck out of my tongue while tasting it at the end.

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It certainly sound like it was anything but "bland" with those spices.

I would certainly agree that ginger would give it more of a "spark" or lift.

Ginger is one of my favorite ways to make dishes that are a bit on the blah more emphatic.

As I always have some growing, or simply "stored" in sandy soil in pots, I don't have to run out to buy it.

I also always have a goodly supply of candied ginger that can work in a pinch.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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F- the French twists... French food is just incomplete Mexican dishes :laugh:

Sorry I didn't see the thread earlier... those pumpkins receive two important traditional treatments.

1) Ayomole (Pumpkin Mole)... with these types of Pumpkins.. remove the seeds & roast them, meanwhile bake the Pumpkin, seperately... dry roast onions & garlic on a grill (or sweat them alternative), toast & hydrate dried chiles (Costenos if you can find them... otherwise a blend of 2 parts Anchos, 1 part Pasilla Negro would work fine), toast & grind allspice (or blend of black pepper, cumin, coriander & cloves), finally trim some Epazote leaves. Bring these ingredients (roasted seeds, toasted chiles, spices, epazote etc.,) together in a blender & puree with water & salt (or broth)... to a thickness like pancake batter. Strain through a sieve.. and incorporate with the baked pumpkin flesh in the blender pureeing in batches if needed.

You can serve the Mole with a wide range of dishes.. although bitter, slow cooked greens, heirloom whole beans & corn tortillas is one of the classic combinations.

2) Calabaza en Tacha (Candied Pumpkins)

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It certainly sound like it was anything but "bland" with those spices.

I would certainly agree that ginger would give it more of a "spark" or lift.

Ginger is one of my favorite ways to make dishes that are a bit on the blah more emphatic.

As I always have some growing, or simply "stored" in sandy soil in pots, I don't have to run out to buy it.

I also always have a goodly supply of candied ginger that can work in a pinch.

I was generous with the spices, but after cooking up those pumpkins, and having to thin them with some stock, and adding the other ingredients, the final volume was about 10 quarts of soup--and the spices got streeeetched a long way.

Forgot about candied ginger--that might have been just right. I was sure that powdered ginger would not be the right thing, though I had that in abundance. I should finally fill a pot with sand & plug some ginger into it. Have pots, have sand, could probably get a little growth from it, even.

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  • 5 years later...

It's that time of year when we're inundated with all things pumpkin.

Personally, I'm not a fan...I can have one piece of pumpkin pie and I'm good for the rest of the year.

What do you think?   Overkill?

(I do buy cans of pumpkin purée for my dogs, though, it's a great dietary supplement for them.)

Edited by lindag (log)
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That was telepathic. I baked a couple of pumpkin/cranberry/walnut loaves last night. Because pumpkin. I'm not a big pumpkin fan, but I was at TJ's so I bought some of their canned organic pumpkin. The loaves came out nice, albeit nothing spectacular. (The cranberries make it good, if I may say so myself.)

 

I also give pumpkin to my dog, but I usually buy Libby's. TJ's canned pumpkin is much more watery than Libby's. My dog won't eat it. She won't even eat her treats when I mix them together with the TJ's pumpkin. Sheesh.

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My ex neighbors gave me half of a banana squash, split down the middle.  So I have a 3 ft long, 10 inch wide chunk of squash that can double for pumpkin.  When they lived next door we used to raise different types of squash and trade our extras.

I can no longer garden but they have a mini "ranch" and grow a lot. Their half is going to be turned into calabaza en tacha - Celia's method produces chunks of candied squash with a faint citrus flavor and cinnamon.  She uses the Mexican piloncillo that is nearly black, breaking it up in a granite molcajete - not the porous kind - until it is granular and she "toasts" it before making the syrup for the candying so it has a hint of "burnt sugar" which I love.  I have tasted candied pumpkin or squash many times and never tasted any quite like she makes.  

 

I cut off a chunk and microwaved it and this squash is quite sweet.

I am cutting the rest into pieces and will pressure cook them and process into puree.

It should 

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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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In my youth I made pumpkin pie from scratch, starting with the pumpkin seed.  Neither fun nor all that great.  The only pumpkin pie I enjoy is a KAF recipe from one of their baking books.  Now that is good.  But I don't have much of a sweet tooth so I seldom make such things.

 

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1 hour ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

In my youth I made pumpkin pie from scratch, starting with the pumpkin seed.  Neither fun nor all that great.  The only pumpkin pie I enjoy is a KAF recipe from one of their baking books.  Now that is good.  But I don't have much of a sweet tooth so I seldom make such things.

 

My pumpkin pie recipe is not as sweet as most. I can't stand most because they are much too sweet. 

it is a pumpkin custard pie - uses 6 large eggs.  My recipe actually fills a 10 inc pie dish. 

I note that if you use a 9-inch  prepared pie shell,  butter a small pyrex baker and bake the remaining batter in it.

 

The pie with the big leaf was made with Hubbard squash.

The one with the moons was made with canned pumpkin from Trader Joes.

 

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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I like squash and pumpkin :)

 

It seems that everyone just uses the purée, which is a shame.  I like to roast pieces in duck fat with garlic cloves and thyme, serving it with beef or whatever.  

 

I make the occasional dessert with them as well.  For me, the key is to whip whatever your doing; when they're dense, pumpkin desserts are really dense.  

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My mom doesn't particularly like pumpkin pie, so we never had it when I was growing up. (Squash with dinner, yes. Pumpkin pie/bread/whatever, no.) I still don't quite get pumpkin pie myself, although if it's put in front of me I'll eat it. I feel like I should try making BraveTart's pumpkin pie, which starts with homemade sweetened condensed milk and butternut squash. Rick Bayless also has a terrific and easy recipe for roasted butternut squash soup with apple and chipotle, which I suspect would work equally well with other roastable squashes.

 

Everyone here loooooves when I make the Trader Joe's pumpkin bread mix, in mini muffins, with a couple of big handfuls of chocolate chips stirred into the batter. I'd love to figure out how to make something like this myself, as easily as opening the box.

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MelissaH

Oswego, NY

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Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

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I see canned pumpkin as a completely different animal than whole squashes. I love butternut squash and kabocha, and never use them in sweet applications. I like them roasted, or in a soup, or any which way really, but always savory. Canned pumpkin I use for sweet applications only; I can't even think of how to use it for anything else.

 

I bunked into this recipe the other day: http://ohsweetday.com/2016/11/pumpkin-mousse-chocolate-cake.html which definitely looks worth a try. Maybe this weekend. (Or next.)

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