Nov 9, 2010

October Leaves, Squash Returns


October always flies by too fast.  This is something I believe and have heard from numerous people this week.  Usually accompanied by a sigh.  I'm not sure if it's because it's my favourite time of year, or because the month seems to perch so precariously between deep Autumn and early Winter, that it seems so delicate and temporary.  We appear to get just the most brief space of October, and then it's gone and the cold, biting winds and forecasted snow of November rolls in.

To distract myself from watching the Weather Channel for any local snow news, I'm looking over my haul of squash from the farm stands last week.  To think - I used to hate these wonderful veggies (or fruits - whatever you prefer!)  Now I cannot make it through a Winter without a good stock of squash.



A few hints for great Winter meals involving squash:

~ Pick squash that is unblemished and hard.  Don't bring any home that feel soft at all, or are bumped or nicked.  They won't last.

~ Keep your squash in a cool, dry place.  A basement or out of the way cupboard is perfect.

~ Unless you want to add extra sugar, try to find the sweeter varieties like Acorn, Dumpling, Celebration and other small squash.  You can roast these with a simple pinch of salt and pepper and a dab of butter - yum!  Okay - full disclosure: sometimes I do toss a teaspoon of brown sugar in there too!

~ Pick one or two easy recipies.  You are more likely to use up your pile of squash if it doesn't take two hours to prepare your dish.  I've had a butternut squash for a year - telling myself that I'm going to make Butternut Ravioli and it never happens.  It is possible that it is now solid rock inside - and will very likely find a new home in my compost in the Spring.  Instead I make a nice roast squash, or an easy squash soup. 

~  As the squash sit, their colours will fade.  As long as the skin is unpunctured, and the squash is firm, they will still be good to eat.


Enjoy this last bounty of Autumn - and stock up!

17 comments:

Kallan said...

I feel the exact same way about October. Love your ideas and tips for squash! The pictures are just beautiful too :)

Aine O'Brien said...

I love squash and like you I used to hate it!

Thanks for the squash tips. We eat organic around here so it "forces" you to eat seasonal vegetables and right now that means squash.

I don't think Autumn is long enough at all. But I did enjoy gazing at your beautiful pics.

faerwillow said...

~oh but its not over yet...i know the holiday but the season is still alive!! your pictures are gorgeous with all those little delicious one waiting to go home with someone...i am guilty of brown sugar added to mine!! i shall blame it on my mother...hehehe...that is the only way she ever made squash...i hope all is well with you and your enjoy your day ahead...much l♥ve and light upon you always~

jaz@octoberfarm said...

summer seems to just drag on and one and finally october arrives and swoosh....it is gone in a heartbeat! Why?

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I have yet to develop your sophisticated palate re squash. But who knows, perhaps someday?

Summer said...

In my neck of the woods, it's still pretty warm. The weather likes to tease us with a few fall-like days, only to zoom back up in the 70's.

I love squash and have been stockpiling already! Thanks for the storage tips, though.

D.Suplicki said...

I feel the same way about October. *sigh*

I've never cooked squash before, it's one of those things that is probably super simple to do but I'm terrified I'll completely and utterly mess it up!

Susan Erickson said...

I had the most wonderful roasted, acorn squash last night....so tasty...and local too....it's easy to find local squash and that's important too...

TMC said...

squash is amazing.

Wendy said...

I LOVE spaghetti squash with butter and fresh parmesan and a good sprinkle of rosemary. Thank you for reminding me of eating and enjoying this.

Judy said...

Sounds like you know your squash...I have this huge heirloom squash...how do I cook it? Thanks for your help ...

mxtodis123 said...

I love how squash looks, but don't eat it. I usually buy it just for decor.
Mary

Judith said...

I always stock up on squash every fall, love it!

TMCPhoto said...

I am so with you on the holding onto something and telling myself I'm going to make such and such recipe only to have to toss the hoarded fruit/veg into the compost.

I have my eye on roasted apple squash soup in my near future; served with hot whole grain biscuits it's the perfect winter soup

Sobeit said...

Great post Rue - loved the views on October and the information on using squash. I have yet to take advantage on using the squash available around - maybe this inspire me.

Sobeit

Jeanne said...

Look at all those 'gourd-eous' squash! ♥

Tracy DeLuca said...

I LOVE squash but need to find some new recipes. I get tired of the same old thing!!