Monday, July 29, 2013

Battle of the Bulge: Up the Squash Factor

I got into consuming squash more when I heard Dr. Fuhrman advocate it as one of the best foods for weight loss/maintenance. Apparently, squash provides carb-satisfaction with a fraction of the calories. 

I had tried acorn squash once, but I found the sweetness of butternut to be more appealing.
But raw butternut squash is a royal pain to cut up. I'm usually exhausted halfway through, knife flailing as I hack and whack, possibly slicing a finger open in the process, never mind my hands being dyed orange

When I was going to make a soup, I decided that an effortless shortcut was needed. What if I just baked the whole thing first, then sliced it up?

Proving my hypothesis with this, I happily stabbed the squash all over, placed it on a foiled cookie sheet, and tossed it into a 375° oven for an hour. 

The results were a creamy, delicious squash, with a very tasty skin. I really should have rotated it halfway through, since the underside was more raw than the exposed top, so I made a note for next time. 

My knife slid easily between the skin and flesh, and I nibbled on scraps of the peel as I added the now malleable squash to my soup. 

Mmmm, I should have this for breakfast, I thought, surveying the leftovers

I did, with a little drizzle of maple syrup. It was yummy and satisfied my growling belly.

I'm starting to have a bit of a crush on spaghetti squash. Although I am a true potato lover as opposed to pasta, one of my favorite childhood meals was lukshen with cottage cheese and ketchup. 

I did the same with it; stabbed it all over, chucked it into the oven, halved it and scraped out the spaghettiness. I have to say, it was just as tasty.
Squash contain these beautiful seeds, and I felt heartless chucking them into the trash. They can be salvaged, flavored, and roasted or fried. Seeds contain great nutrition as well.       


Anonymous said...

You can also slice the butternut squash in half and bake it, skin-side-down. When it's ready, just scoop out the seeds and voila! You're good to go. You can easily scoop out the baked butternut squash. No need to rotate.

Princess Lea said...

True! When it's in half like that, the liquids that ooze out caramelize into this deliciously sweet sauce . . .