September Produce Spotlight: Squash

September 16, 2011

By Lana Buseman

Acorn-squash 
Photo: Simplyrecipes.com

September is Organic Harvest Month and when I think of harvest vegetables, squash always comes to mind. It is such a “fall vegetable.” It’s hearty and earthy and so versatile. There are also a multitude of varieties including acorn squash, butternut squash and spaghetti squash. Most squash has orange flesh, which is key because orange fruits and vegetables have a range of health benefits and can help protect you from heart disease and cancer.

There are as many ways to enjoy squash as there are varieties. Here are some suggestions on how to make the most of this harvest veggie!

  • Cut an acorn squash in half width-wise and place each half, cut side up, in a baking pan. Add ¼ inch of water to the pan and sprinkle some brown sugar and a pat of butter in the center of the squash. Roast in a 400-degree oven for 1 hour.
  • Slice yellow squash on a bias and toss with olive oil, dried herbs, salt and pepper. Grill over medium heat until tender.
  • Cut a spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and microwave for 6-8 minutes. Run a fork from top to bottom to retrieve the “spaghetti.” Toss with feta cheese, olives and basil or top with tomato sauce.
  • Peel and seed a butternut squash. Cut the squash in one-inch cubes. In a pot, heat oil and sauté one chopped onion until translucent. Add squash, six cups of stock and simmer until squash is tender. Remove squash with a slotted spoon and blend, or use an immersion blender in the pot. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
  • Peel and cube butternut squash. Toss with olive oil and maple syrup and roasted on a foil lined baking sheet for 35 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve over a salad, as a side to poultry or on its own!

What is your favorite way to prepare squash?