Blooming Glen Farm | butternut squash
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butternut squash Tag

Butternut Squash & Leek CasseroleNothing says autumn harvest like a butternut squash, right? Like its buddy, the delicata squash, butternut is low in calories, carbs, and fat, and high in vitamins A and C. Butternut squash also provides a very healthy dose of the minerals, potassium and manganese, and is a good source of vitamin E, thiamin, niacin, vitamin B6, folate, calcium, and magnesium. Additionally, the carotenoids that provide its gorgeous color also deliver antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. As if that weren’t enough, butternut squash also lives up to its silky, delicious, buttery name. Beauty and brains — you just can’t beat it!

Butternut squash tastes divine after roasting, which really brings out its sweetness. It also makes a great soup, where you can add savory elements for a great depth of flavor — a loaf of Bakers on Broad bread completes this tasty meal! Finally, pair butternut squash with whole grains; the smooth texture of the squash makes an excellent partner to hardy whole grains. The cool weather inspired the butternut squash casserole recipe below, which also uses in-season leeks. Let the oven warm up the house and serve this comfort food with a side of green’s from this week’s share.

References and recommended links:

Butternut Squash & Leek CasseroleButternut Squash & Leek Casserole
Ingredients
1 tbs grapeseed oil
3 leeks, sliced into half-moons
1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 can coconut milk
1/4+ tsp cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste
1-2 tbs chopped herbs (rosemary, sage, and/or thyme work great)
1 box (13.25oz) dried whole wheat elbow macaroni
1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs

Method
Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Lightly spray a 9- x 13-inch casserole dish with grapeseed oil.

Heat oil in a heavy-bottom pot over medium heat. Add leeks and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5-7 minutes. Add squash, coconut milk, cayenne, salt, and pepper and turn up heat to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until squash is tender, about 15-20 minutes. Stir in herbs and simmer another minute.

Meanwhile, cook macaroni al dente, about 7 minutes. Rinse in cold water, drain, and put into a large bowl. Transfer squash mixture to bowl with macaroni. Add salt and pepper and toss to combine. Transfer to casserole dish and top with bread crumbs. Bake until it begins to brown and is cooked throughout, about 25 minutes.

Post and photos by Mikaela D. Martin: Blooming Glen CSA member since 2005, board-certified health counselor, and co-founder and -owner of Guidance for Growing, an integrative wellness practice in Souderton. Read more about healthy eating and living on her site, http://guidanceforgrowing.com!

A half pound bag of pea shoots is quite a lot. You can easily enjoy the tender shoots in a delicious raw salad with lettuce and arugula. Looking for more ideas? Garnish your favorite fall soup with the sprouts or partner with fish. With a wonderful vibrant pea flavor, the tiny shoots make a fantastic topping for a homemade white pizza, or a crisp whole wheat flatbread. I love flatbreads because they are endlessly versatile and a cinch to whip up. This one combines the hearty fall flavor of roasted butternut squash with the refreshing pop of the pea shoots–a little taste of spring as we head in to winter.  

 

Crispy Whole Wheat Flatbread with Butternut Squash, Goat Cheese and Pea Shoots

In a medium sized bowl, mix 1/2 cup warm water with 1 teaspoon active dry yeast. Let sit for 5 minutes.

Stir in 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Knead until the dough is soft and elastic, about five minutes, adding small amounts of flour if the dough is too sticky. Let rise for about 45 minutes in a warm spot.

While dough is rising, preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Peel and dice 1 butternut squash, coat in 1 tablespoon olive oil, and roast on a baking sheet for about 15 minutes, until squash is tender and starting to caramelize on the edges. Set aside the roasted squash and reuse the baking sheet for the dough. 

When the dough has nearly doubled in size, increase the oven heat to 475 degrees. Sprinkle a cutting board or countertop with additional flour and roll the dough into a 10-12 inch circle. Sprinkle baking sheet with a bit of cornmeal, then place the dough on the sheet. Bake for about 10 minutes, until cooked through and golden brown. 

Top warm flatbread with roasted butternut squash, crumbled goat cheese, a handful of pea shoots, a pinch of salt and pepper, and a sprinkle of balsamic vinegar. Cut into wedges or strips and serve as a light lunch or stunning appetizer. **Not a fan of goat cheese? This recipe can easily be modified to compliment your family’s palette. Try roasted walnuts or pine nuts paired with butternut and a sharp cheese or crumbled tofu.

Recipe contributed by Kate Darlington – Blooming Glen Farm intern, Colorado native, and food lover.

I love putting things in my pancakes! Nuts, chocolate and bananas are some classic add-ins. Things like blueberries, strawberries, peaches are great because you can integrate seasonal fruits. However, you can even take it a step further during fall season by mixing in some veggies like sweet potatoes or winter squash into your morning breakfast regiment. A butternut and cinnamon combo is one of my favorites drizzled with real maple syrup. You can also sub in sweet potatoes for a similar flavor.

Butternut Squash Buttermilk Pancakes

-Prep your squash by peeling 1 small butternut and dice into cubes (about 1 1/2-2 cups. ) Boil in water until tender. Drain and mash with a fork. You want at least 1 cup of mashed squash. I used about 1 1/2.

In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients:
1 1/2 cups of flour (3/4 cups of each white and wheat flour is nice)
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of salt
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
1 teaspoon of cinnamon

-Separate 2 eggs and beat the yolks in a bowl with 1 and 3/4 cups of buttermilk
**If you don’t have buttermilk on-hand you can perform a quick substitution by adding 1 tablespoon of lemon juice to milk or by mixing 1 cup yogurt with 3/4 cup milk.

-Pour egg and buttermilk into the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Pour in 6 tablespoons of melted butter. Mix again.

-Fold in butternut squash mash.

-Heat griddle and brown pancakes on each side. Make sure you don’t rush it and cook the cakes through because they tend to take a little longer than regular pancakes.

-Keep warm in the oven and serve with butter and maple syrup!

Recipe and photos by Jana Smart- Blooming Glen Farm employee and frequent creator of creative recipes using farm fresh seasonal ingredients.

A whopping six inches of heavy snow fell on the farm this weekend… a first for the end of October, but considering the fall we’ve had, not all that surprising. A few crops that we thought we might have for this week and next are buried under snow (arugula) or just didn’t hold up to the hard freeze (swiss chard). But thanks to the high tunnels, we have bok choy, head lettuce and greens. Next week is the last pick-up of the season: Tuesday, November 8th and Friday, November 11th.

November 1, 2011

In the share this week are a few new crops you may not be familiar with.

The watermelon radish when sliced looks just like a watermelon with a green rind and rosy pink interior.  The color intensifies with a splash of vinegar.  Gorgeous in a salad raw, this radish can also be roasted, added to stir fries, sautéed, added to stews, or even boiled and mashed (peel the skin first). Milder than most radishes, it is actually slightly sweet with a nice crisp bite when raw. The watermelon radish is an heirloom variety of the Daikon.

In the squash family there is a choice of cheese pumpkin, blue hubbard squash and butternut.

A classic pumpkin of the 19th century, the Long Island Cheese pumpkin was likely named for its shape and color, which bring to mind a wheel of dairy-fresh cheese. The name may also come from the colonial practice of making “pumpkin cheese”, a somewhat sweet preserve (or what we would call pumpkin butter) from squashes that do not store well. This pumpkin has a sweet flesh that’s good for baking.

The Blue Hubbard winter squash is believed to have originated in the West Indies, and first arrived in Marblehead, Massachusetts in the 1700’s. It is described as “starchy, dry, thick, flaky, floury, melting, nutty and fine-textured with a brilliant orange flesh”. It has excellent storage properties. When kept in a cool place (around 50°) it will last for a few months. It is delicious in pies, for which it is best known, but it can also be cut into serving size pieces and baked or steamed. Because of its grainy texture, it is often mashed or pureed with butter and seasonings before serving. You can bake it whole, or if it is too large, cut it, or break it by putting it in a big plastic bag and dropping it on the ground. Excellent source of Vitamin A and contains fair amounts of iron and riboflavin.

The butternut squash has the longest storage potential of all squash. The butternut has a bright orange, moist flesh with a nutty flavor and a tan exterior skin and bulbed end. It is very versatile for cooking. Bake in sections in oven with skin on, or peel off the skin, cube and boil, then blend into soup.

Saturday's snowy harvest.

Photos and text by Tricia Borneman, Blooming Glen farmer and co-owner.

In your share this week is a 1/2 a pound of golden shallots. Shallots are like a sophisticated onion- one with a more delicate and sweet garlicky flavor. They are wonderful in risotto or roasted alongside a chicken then used as a base for gravy, or carmelized and paired with roast beef. This week’s recipe features roasted butternut with sage and shallots.
A fresh bunch of tasty arugula is in the share for another week- this is a green that doesn’t mind the cold nights. I picked up some wonderful Petite Seckle pears at the Headhouse Farmers Market this weekend, and have been enjoying them in an arugula and goat cheese salad with a balsamic vinaigrette. Delicious!

October 25, 1011

As the CSA winds down, I want to draw your attention to some of the many hands that helped to bring your veggies from the field to your dinner plate. Not only is there our regular crew of folks who are here five days a week out in the fields, but there is our wash crew that comes in once a week, either Tuesday or Friday morning during the 24 week harvest season. Always with a smile, they don their rubber overalls to help wash, dunk, spray, refresh and generally remove mud and dirt.

Meghan, Donna, Stephanie, and Dale: washers extraordinaire!

Meghan, an employee at Whole Foods, has been our wash queen for 4 years now, Donna joins us for year two, and Stephanie started this Spring. My dad (Dale, Pop-Pop, or Mr. B, depending) is a “pinch hit washer”- when he’s not mowing, building or fixing things, cleaning up after all of us, or playing with his granddaughter, he’s washing, or generally doing whatever we need him to do on any given day. Thanks wash crew- we appreciate what you do!

Photos and text by Tricia Borneman, Blooming Glen farmer and co-owner.

Minestrone means “big soup” in Italian: a big soup of many vegetables. A tasty soffritto (a base of aromatic vegetables) made of celery, onion and herbs gives this soup a rich base and fall favorites like butternut squash and kale make it healthy and hearty. Traditionally, either white beans or pasta are thrown in at the end. In this version I decided to use both to make the soup a complete meal-in-a-bowl! As the season progresses you can also make a “winter” version of this using turnips, potatoes and cabbage in place of the squash and kale.

This recipe was an adaptation of Alice Water’s recipe from her book, The Art of Simple Food.


Fall Minestrone

If you are planning on making this with beans, I first suggest soaking 1 cup dried cannellini beans in plenty of water (beans will swell) overnight so they cook quickly and retain a nice texture.

The next day when you are ready to make your soup…

-Strain beans and place in large pot with fresh water and bring to a boil. Cook until tender but not mushy. About 15-20 minutes. Strain cooked beans but keep the liquid for later.

-Heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat and add 1 large onion, finely chopped and 3 stalks of celery, chopped. Saute until a rich golden brown color.

-Throw into soffritto:
1 bunch of kale or chard, roughly chopped
1 leek, diced
5 sprigs of thyme
1 bay leaf
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons of salt

-Cook for 5 more minutes until kale is wilted a bit

-Add 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Turn to medium-low heat and cook everything for 15 minutes with the lid on.

-Add 2 cups of butternut squash (about 1 small squash or 1/2 a large one) that has been peeled and chopped into 1/4 inch cubes. Cook for 15 more minutes. Taste for salt and add more if necessary.

-Add the cooked beans along with 2 cups of the bean cooking liquid and 1 cup of dried pasta (optional). Cook for 8 more minutes until pasta is tender. If  soup is too thick, add more bean cooking liquid. Remove the bay leaf.

-Serve in bowls, each garnished with some extra-virgin olive oil and grated Parmesan cheese.

Recipe and photos by Jana Smart- Blooming Glen Farm employee and frequent creator of creative recipes using farm fresh seasonal ingredients. Check out more of her recipes on her food blog http://www.agrarianeats.blogspot.com/