Cozy jumpers, golden leaves, crisp sunny days and the first pumpkins appearing in shops and on doorsteps: autumn has officially arrived. And, what better way to dive into autumn delights than by eating the colours of the season with mouth-watering, locally grown squash.
With their warm, earthy colours perfectly fitting with the season and sweet, starchy flesh, these gourds are the ultimate healthy comfort food to carry you through the cooling season.
And, if you think squash varieties are limited to butternut and pumpkin – think again! From crown prince to red kuri to sweet dumpling, there are so many delicious varieties to enjoy…
But, what to do with them? Well – we’ve got a few ideas!
This is the most simple, fool proof way to cook squash. Simply roasting allows you to truly enjoy the unique flavour of each squash variety for the ultimate veggie appreciation. There’s no need to peel (thank goodness, as peeling a squash can prove laborious!), as the skins become tender and tasty with cooking.
Whole, sliced in half, diced, cut length ways – any shape will do. Drizzle with Mesto olive oil, a good sprinkling of herbs (how about rosemary, cumin and crushed garlic?), seasoning, and bake for approximately 45-90 minutes (or until the squash is tender and golden).
You can add roast squash to any number of dishes for a more intense, sweet squash flavour. But we love to eat roast squash accompanied by other winter foods for a sweet-savoury accompaniment to a weekday dinner. Cut into lengths, roast squash even makes a healthy alternative to fries!
2. Add to curries and stews.
Peel, deseed and dice, and add to your hearty and wholesome stews and curries. You’ll be amazed at the sweet, delicate dimension squash will add to your dishes. Why not try an easy and aromatic red lentil, squash and coconut curry?
3. A delicious twist to a classic quiche
4. Step up your pasta
Squash and pasta might just be the most heavenly combination. The sweet creaminess of seasonal squash can lighten and enhance the flavour of a comforting pasta dish. Try Pumpkin Pasta, or even add to macaroni and cheese to revel in the true magic of these scrumptious winter veg (a plant-based version here).
Want to take it to the next level? You can leave out the pasta altogether and have actual squash-pasta! Spiralized butternut squash makes a surprisingly tasty spaghetti alternative. How about a herby goats cheese butternut-noodles? In lieu of a spiralizer, nature has provided us with spaghetti squash – simply roast and scoop out the flesh for a pasta alternative.
A flavoursome side dish, mashed squash and be as simple or elaborate as you like – from simply steaming and mashing with whatever seasoning you care for, to dishes such as this garlic and sage squash mash.
6. Cool weather soups
A fail-safe ingredient for a delicious, sweet, naturally creamy soup to satisfy even the fussiest of eaters. How about trying this superb squash soup by Jamie Oliver?
Yes, really! Winter gourds are so versatile. Step out of the box of using veg only for savoury dishes and add a little wholesome sweetness to your life. How about a Japanese kabocha squash pie? Or fragrantly spiced squash-molasses cookies?
Any of our unusual squash varieties can replace the squash used in these recipes. Let us know your favourite way to each squash in the comments! Don’t forget to like and share if you enjoyed this cooking inspiration.
Feeling inspired to cook with this magical veg? Check out the local, unusual varieties of squash that we sell! More varieties are on their way as we head deeper into Autumn…
Don’t forget to use the hashtag #EatSussex so we can see your divine seasonal squash pictures and home-cooked treats on social media…