Butternut Squash Saute

Butternut Squash Saute

Winter squash season is here, and I could not be happier. I love the variety of squash (and pumpkin) at the markets this time of year. They are both beautiful and tasty.

This dish is a saute of butternut squash with onions, garlic, carrots and finished off with black sesame seeds.It makes a great, seasonal side dish.

I used butternut squash, but you could use any number of hard squashes, or even pumpkin. If you are looking for a different way to cook some of those squash- try this dish. I think you might be surprised at just how good it is.

When cutting up hard squashes, you have to be careful not to cut yourself. A round, hard  squash, with a tough outer skin can be a recipe for disaster. I trim a small slice off one end of my squash, creating a flat side. Then I lay it down on that side, to make it more stable for cutting. With the butternut, once it was sliced on one side, I was able to cut in in half pretty easily.


Butternut Squash Sauté

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon minced garlic

4 cups cubed fresh butternut, acorn or Hubbard squash or pumpkin

1/2 cup grated carrot

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 teaspoons black sesame seeds

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and garlic; cook and stir until the onions begin to brown. Stir in the squash, carrot, soy sauce, salt, and pepper; cook, covered, another 5 to 7 minutes, until squash is tender. Sprinkle with sesame seeds before serving.

Winter Squash Ravioli Soup

Squash Ravioli Soup

Squash Ravioli Soup

After cooking up a Hubbard squash, I was looking for a way to use some of it in a soup. It is chilly here and I was in the mood for soup, but I wasn’t in the mood for a pureed soup. I found inspiration in my freezer. I was putting some of the squash in the freezer, when I noticed a package of won ton wrappers. I decided to use the squash as a filling for ravioli, then just put the ravioli in the soup. I played with the spices and added some butter to the filling, too. It needed that extra bit of fat for flavor. It worked well. I just cooked the ravioli right in the soup, but you could also enjoy them without soup at all. You can just cook the ravioli in water. Once they are tender, drain and top with the sauce of your choice. I like brown butter with a little sage, but even a red sauce would be nice with the ravioli. Here is the recipe- for both the ravioli and the soup. Almost any winter squash or pumpkin could work in the filling, too.


Squash Ravioli Soup

24 round won ton/dumpling wrappers
1 cup cooked winter squash or pumpkin
2 T. softened butter
1 T. chopped parsley
1 t. paprika
1 t. nutmeg
½ t. garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
Pinch of cayenne

2 T. oil or butter
2 onions, peeled and sliced
6 c. stock- chicken or veggie
3-4 carrots, peeled and sliced
2-3 c. thinly sliced collard greens
Salt and pepper
Dash of hot sauce
Fresh chopped parsley

Combine ravioli filling. Adjust seasonings. Place a rounded tablespoonful of filling on one of the wrappers. Dampen edges with water and place another wrapper on top. Seal, pressing out as much air as possible. Continue with remaining filling and wrappers- you should have 12 raviolis in all. Set aside while making the soup.
Heat oil or butter in a pot and add the onions. Cook until onions are tender. Add stock and bring to a boil. Add carrots and collards and cook until veggies are tender. Add seasonings and bring soup to a boil. Add the raviolis and let the soup simmer gently until they are cooked- about 4 minutes. Stir a little to keep them from sticking, but gently. They get a lot bigger and are sort of delicate. Transfer gently with a large spoon to soup bowls and ladle over the soup. Serves 4- 6.


Pumpkin Bisque

Pumpkin Bisque

Pumpkin Bisque

What’s in a name? When I make this soup I actually almost never use pumpkin. Every Fall I stock up on Winter squashes like butternut, acorn, Hubbard and more. A few pumpkins, too. Eventually I cut them up and roast them. Once cooled they are pureed and frozen to use throughout the year. Pretty much any package I pull out of the freezer is as likely squash as pumpkin. I am not sure it really matters. I love butternut and Hubbard the most of the winter squashes, but in this soup any of the squash or pumpkins add a similar sweetness that works. The soup is easy to make and takes almost no time at all. Great for when you need something to warm you up – fast.


Pumpkin Bisque

2 T. butter
¼ c. chopped onion
½ t. ginger
1 T. flour
2 c. cooked pumpkin
2 c. chicken broth
2 c. milk
salt and pepper to taste

Sauté butter, onion and ginger. Stir in flour. Add pumpkin and cook 5 minutes. Add broth and milk and stir often until heated through. Adjust seasonings. Serves 4-6.

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