AUTHOR: Julia TITLE: All Purpose Autumn - Squash Puree DATE: 10/06/2008 09:41:00 PM ----- BODY:

Acorn and butternut squashes are quintessential autumn. Not only are they delicious and nutritious, the burnt orange color beckons the crisp autumn air. My favorite preparation: pureed. In this form it is so versatile:
- Served as a side dish with pork, skate or duck.
- Thickened with parmesan and bread crumbs for a ravioli or cannelloni filling
- Thinned with chicken stock for a soup

Above, I served the squash puree with fried sage, seared skate, port wine sauce and the first of the season arugula and mizuna from the garden. As a soup, this recipe won second place at the locavore banquet last month. And it couldn’t be easier.

Squash puree
1 acorn squash
1 butternut squash
1 tablespoon butter
1 royal gala apple, cored and sliced
1 onion, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon Madras curry powder
Salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste

1. Slice squash in half from the root to the stem. Put cut side down on a baking sheet with about ½ cup of water. Bake at 375F for 1 hour, or until squash are tender.
2. Meanwhile, heat a skillet over medium heat. Melt the butter and add the apples and onions. Saute until they start to soften and brown, about 5 minutes. Add the curry powder and cook for 2 minutes more.
3. Remove squash from oven, scoop out the seeds and discard. Scoop out the squash flesh and combine with apple/onion mix.
4. Puree in a food processor until smooth. Season to taste with salt, pepper and lemon juice.
5. Adapt as desired.

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----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger melissa DATE:10/07/2008 12:49:00 PM I have never done a puree or soup with squash and I really, really want to this year. Thanks for making it simple, it's very encouraging. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) DATE:10/07/2008 09:05:00 PM Love the combination of squash and sage, and I often use my abundant amount of sage in the garden (yes, I know you have lots, too!) as a fried garnish. What a great idea to have a versatile puree like this one on hand -- I'd mix it with some apples to make a soup. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Julia DATE:10/08/2008 06:12:00 AM melissa, you'll have to let me know if you try it!

lydia, I totally agree about the apples. And was I that obvious about the sage? :) ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Anonymous DATE:10/09/2008 03:50:00 PM I've always scooped the seeds out of the squash before baking, does leaving them in retain moisture? ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Julia DATE:10/10/2008 09:26:00 AM Anon., I've heard that the squash is sweeter when you roast it with the seeds still there. I've never experimented with it, so I don't know this for fact. It definitely holds in more moisture. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Anonymous Anonymous DATE:10/10/2008 01:40:00 PM Is frying sage as easy as it sounds? Would you mind providing directions? ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Julia DATE:10/11/2008 05:36:00 PM Anon., Fried Sage is very easy... I fry it in about an inch of canola oil, over medium-high heat just until it turns bright green and translucent. Drain on a paper towel and season with salt. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Psychgrad DATE:10/13/2008 01:55:00 PM I like the squash soup too - I keep walking by the squash in the market thinking that I need to find a good soup recipe. ----- --------