The squash family are very much in season at the moment; whether it be the familiar Butternut, the inelegant Onion Squash, the Turk’s Turban or the versatile Spaghetti Squash – and those are just a few – squash is both nutritious and surprisingly tasty and for those low-carb devotees contains only 8g per 100g.
Gloucestershire grown Squash from www.overfarmmarket.co.uk
Each variety is very different in taste, and there are so many ways to enjoy them. Classically, a good first dip into the world of the Squash is with a soup. Butternut Squash soup makes a lovely light lunch choice – and is surprisingly sustaining.
Autumn Spiced Butternut Squash Soup
Peel and dice one 1kg Butternut squash, making sure to scoop out the seeds
Fry one large onion in 30g unsalted butter until the onion becomes translucent
Add one small diced chilli, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp turmeric and stir in the butternut squash
Make up 1 litre of chicken or vegetable stock (I use the gel pots) as directed and pour over the vegetables
Cover and reduce the heat, cooking for about 30minutes until the squash is very soft
Remove from the heat and blend with a stick blender or blender
Season to taste – if the soup is a little thick add a little more stock, if it is too thin reduce over a medium heat
Serve sprinkled with some freshly chopped coriander and finely diced chilli – some wholemeal Indian flatbread eats very well with this soup
Today, for lunch, I had a bit of a leftovers moment. I roasted some chunks of Onion squash, with the skin left on, with olive oil and a little salt and pepper, once they began to soften I added chunks of ripe fig and a drizzle of local honey. Serving as I salad, I drizzled with the caramelised figgy honey juice and topped with some small pieces of Bleu d’Affinois – a very mild French blue-rinded cheese (had I had some Welsh blue Perl Las www.cawscenarth.co.uk it could have been even more local). This melted beautifully in the soft buttery squash whilst the fig lifted the flavour and offered an autumnal decadence to the very simple dish.