Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Hubbard squash

Ah the hubbard squash. I finally tackled our ginormous hubbard. It has been sitting patiently in our kitchen waiting, just waiting. At our last summer CSA pickup when they said you can have one squash from over there. Over there were boxes of different kinds of squash, mostly medium-ish, normal looking squash; except for the small array of hubbards. Needless to say my boys immediately glommed onto the hubbards and we were not going home without the single biggest hubbard in the stack.

Today I finally addressed the giant elephant in my kitchen—literally. And it is a small one compared to what they grow commercially.

Now this little beauty is going to go a long, long, long way. As you can see I have a lot of squash and this is what you do if you need to process a lot of squash. Part of it is going straight into tonight's meal as roasted squash (and kohlrabi). Part is being cubed and frozen to be thrown into japanese curry; so good, just cubes of winter veggies (daikon, carrots, squash, potatoes, kohlrabi), water, and golden curry cubes served over rice or noodles. It really hits the spot on cold, cold days. One section of the hubbard will become a yummy pumpkin pie, but the lion's share, well that will be pumpkin bread. I am not a fan of pureed squash or squash soup. It just doesn't taste right, I make it at least once every year and regret it. But I really like pumpkin bread and so do my kids, so pumpkin bread will be the winner for where this squash ends up. I do not boil my squash for pie or bread, I bake it instead. Boiling adds too much water, where there is already enough.

The seeds are going to 'le grande experiment.' My husband read that if you grow squash for 2-3 years where you want grass or other soft stuff, the giant leaves will kill/inhibit the weeds. Well we live next door and downwind of a sweet, yet mostly senile 90 year old woman whose yard is au naturale. She yells at me when I pull up the weeds, because to her they are pretty and even though I can agree that they are, my boys want to throw the ball in the yard without getting stickers in their feet. So every non-pumpkin squash I have had this year I have scooped the seeds and thrown them out on the edges of the yard. I am secretly hoping my squash grow partly into her yard and help maintain the madness.

So, if you ever find yourself with one of these monsters, or even with a lot of little squashes/pumpkins, here is what you can do.

the monster, call her betty

first I just halved her

then I took her down to five parts and seeded her

3 parts for baking, 1 part for roasting, 1 part for freezing, seeds for the yard

these are for roasting, oil and no salt until finished otherwise they won't brown

the bakers, and roasters, and some yams, I believe in fully utilizing your oven

once the roasters are soft I removed them and salted them

the squash is done baking when you can press easily on the skin

I puree my bread/pie squash to make sure there are no strings

3 small bread containers and one large pie container

Add salt, nobs of butter, and broil the roasted squash to brown it

serve with veggie sausages and homemade sauerkraut

Much ado about lots of things!

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