Winter squash and root veggies can be intimidating to those who do not have a lot of experience with them, but they are super easy once you know a few tricks! The picture above shows one way you can use your stove effectively with lots of vegetables cooking at one time. This is what many foodies would call “food prep day”, when they prepare lots of food in one day, for the upcoming week. You can cut squash in half and place in a baking dish (skin side up) with a little water in the dish, on about 350 until soft, OR you can do what this CSA member did, and put it in the oven whole (cut a slit in it just in case it needs it) and bake it until soft enough to cut it open. A tray under the squash is helpful in case they “leak” during cooking. This method is especially helpful if you do not have the strength or the knives to cut a raw squash before baking (it’s not easy!). Sweet potatoes can be put in the oven with no aluminum foil. Chef Scanga recommends cooking sweet potatoes this way (instead of peeling and boiling) so the skin keeps the flavor in! After baking a butternut squash, it’s perfect for making a butternut squash soup
One of our wonderful CSA members sent in a link to this recipe for stuffed acorn squash: http://www.simplecleanliving.com/stuffed-acorn-squash/
If you want to try to “wing it” without a recipe, you could fry some mushrooms, rice (or cauliflower “rice” if you’re grain free), and any of the amazing greens you receive in your Winter CSA box (kale and chard are fantastic for this. We do not recommend arugula or lettuces). Fry them up in a pan the way you would do a stir fry. Place the mixture in half of a baked acorn squash, add some goat cheese or parmesan, like this below:
You can also use acorn squash as a “chili bowl” and put your favorite chili and cheese in there. Possibilities are endless!
And lastly, we have a picture from Organic Eater, who posts many food pictures using our CSA veggies and eggs on Facebook and Instagram. There is a #bellsbestberries hashtag in Instagram, so you can see pictures of our lovely produce from all over the Charlotte area. She shows the steps to cooking a spaghetti squash. You can use the “noodles” just like any other pasta noodles, but we especially like making it just like spaghetti, using meat sauce or marinara on top!
If you prefer, you can cut the raw squash in half first, and bake in a baking dish with a little water, skin side up. Both methods produce the same results. Hope these tips are helpful, and feel free to share your ideas and recipes with us in the comments section!
Eat your veggies,