Updated: Feb 23
Fall gifts us with a variety of squashes that are uniquely beautiful and have interesting shapes, sizes and colors. Squash are fruit, but cooked as a vegetable and packed with beta carotene, vitamin B6, fiber, magnesium and potassium. You can cook squash in many ways that range from microwaving to roasting. Two of my favorite squashes are delicata and honey nut, both with jewel-like color and great taste.
Delicata is an heirloom variety of squash with a cream and green striped rind that is thin and edible. This oblong-shaped squash is golden, very tender and its taste resembles that of a sweet potato. It is delicious baked or stuffed. As with most squash seeds, you can roast them for a salty fall snack!
This little winter squash is a cross between butternut and buttercup squash. Its vibrant orange flesh has a sweet nutty flavor. It’s healthy too, with 2-3 times more beta carotene than butternut squash. They can be roasted, sautéed, puréed, added to soups, stews, and braises, and is suitably sweet for desserts.
Here are my favorite ways to cook each squash.
Delicata Squash: Slice your delicata squash into ¾-inch thick ringlets. Scoop out the seeds and discard unless you want to roast them another time. In a shallow bowl, mix 4 tablespoons of EVOO and 4 tablespoons of maple syrup. In a flat dish, place 3/4 cup of Everything-Bagel Seasoning. Dip each side of the ringlet in the oil and syrup mixture, then pat one side of the ringlet on plate with everything-bagel seeds and place seeded side up on parchment lined baking sheet. Cover with foil and roast at 450F for 15 minutes. Remove foil and roast for another 5 minutes until tender.
If Everything-Bagel seeds aren’t your thing, you can simply cut horizontally, remove squash seeds, drizzle with EVOO and sprinkle on your favorite toppings before roasting. I like to use thinly sliced shallots, olives, and orange zest.
Honey Nut Squash: A simple and easy way to cook it: Cut in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds and place on roasting pan cut side up. Place a pat of butter in the well sprinkle with some sea salt and cinnamon. Roast at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes. Baste once or twice during roasting.