Looking Forward to Winter Squash
The rains have started to come, and with the rain the summer has ended. The days are much grayer and cloudy now, very different than our long sunny summer days that I grew very fond of. The start of autumn has brought some amazing things though. Watching the rivers full of salmon returning to the headwaters has been breathtaking and the change of the leaves is beautiful. The ocean waters are choppier and more turbulent now too. The change is all around us.
The farm is changing a lot now too. All of the fruits that we harvested in the summer are nearly gone. The taste of summer is gone, but now we get the wonderful tastes and colors of the fall. We have been harvesting loads of different kinds of squash, 9 varieties to be exact, each with their own flavors. The varieties are: Acorn, Buttercup, Butternut, Delicata, Blue Hubbard, Red Kuri, Pie Pumpkin, Spaghetti, and Sweet Dumpling. It has been fun to learn when each of these is ready to be harvested and the telltale signs to look for. For example, the Acorn will have a dark green color on most of the squash and a bright orange patch at its sweet spot, and the Delicata will have a big contrast between the yellowish/white parts and the dark green stripes, and can have an orange sweet spot as well.
To me, squash means soup, and lucky for us squash is ready to harvest just as it starts to cool down. This evening I plan on making a Red Kuri soup. My recipe starts with roasting some fennel in the oven for 30 minutes at 375F with oil, salt, and pepper. While the fennel is the oven, chop up your Red Kuri, an onion, and some celery, then toss those in a big pot with 3 cups of water and allow the water to boil. Once the pot is boiling, cover it and allow it to simmer until the squash is soft. Once the fennel is done cooking, add the pieces into the soup and blend it all together. After it’s all blended up, add salt and pepper to taste. Once your soup is done, you get to enjoy your warm fresh soup by the warmth of a nice fire.
Happy eating and hope you all enjoy the squash too,