Winter squash is versatile, delicious, and healthy – and it’s the December Vermont Harvest of the Month being featured through our Upper Valley Farm to School program and others across the state. This fruit makes a comforting soup, a sweet side, or a fabulous main dish. Stock up on local winter squash at your farmers’ market or farmstand and try these satisfying dishes.
Curried Squash Soup
courtesy of Taste of Home
1 butternut squash (1 3/4 pounds)
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp oil
1 tbsp flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp curry powder
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
5 cups chicken broth
1 bay leaf
- Cut squash in half lengthwise; discard seeds. Place squash cut side down in a greased or foil-lined baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 40-50 minutes or until tender. When cool enough to handle, scoop out pulp; set aside.
- In a large saucepan, saute onion and garlic in oil until tender. Add the flour, salt, curry powder, and cayenne until blended. Stir in broth. Add bay leaf. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Cool to room temperature.
- In a blender, combine half of the broth mixture and squash; cover and process until smooth. Repeat with remaining broth mixture and squash. Return to the saucepan; heat through. Combine the topping ingredients; place a dollop on each serving.
Yield: 6 servings.
Roasted Stuffed Acorn Squash
courtesy of chow.com
3 medium acorn squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 tbsp packed dark brown sugar
1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2 medium shallots, finely chopped
4 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 tbsp minced fresh thyme leaves
2 cups cooked wild rice mix
2/3 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
1/4 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
- Heat the oven to 450°F and arrange a rack in the middle.
- Place the squash cut-side up on a baking sheet, brush 1 tablespoon of the melted butter over the tops and insides of the squash halves, sprinkle with the brown sugar, and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until just fork tender, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place 1 tablespoon of the melted butter in a large frying pan over medium heat. When it foams, add the onion, shallots, and celery, season with salt and pepper, and stir to coat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, about 6 minutes. Stir in the thyme and cook until just fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the rice, pecans, cranberries, and measured salt and pepper.
- Divide the rice filling among the roasted squash halves (about 1/2 cup for each) and drizzle the remaining tablespoon of butter over top. Continue roasting until the squash is completely fork tender, the edges have started to brown, and the filling is heated through, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Caramelized Butternut Squash
The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, 1999 All Rights Reserved
2 medium butternut squash (4 to 5 pounds total)
6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Cut off and discard the ends of each butternut squash. Peel the squash, cut them in half lengthwise, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into 1 1/4 to 1 1/2-inch cubes and place them on a baking sheet. Add the melted butter, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. With clean hands, toss all the ingredients together and spread in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 45 to 55 minutes, until the squash is tender and the glaze begins to caramelize. While roasting, turn the squash a few times with a spatula, to be sure it browns evenly. Taste for seasonings and serve hot.