From the Garden this Week…

From the Garden this Week…

Summer Squash, Melons, Mini Flame Seedless Grapes, Bell Peppers, Chinese Eggplant, Spaghetti and Butternut Squash, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Basil, Baby Greens and Arugula

Coming Soon…Lettuce Heads

Using your Produce… by Julie Moreno

This week we have butternut squash coming. Butternut is naturally sweet and creamy. It is great cut into cubes and then roasted with herbs or spices. The spices that it goes with range from chili powder and oregano to cinnamon and curry powder, the options are endless. Instead of cutting and roasting the cubes, you can roast it whole and then scoop out the flesh to eat mashed or use the puree in a soup. You can also use the puree like canned pumpkin and make it into a pie. 1 and ¾ cups of puree equal the same quantity in a can of pumpkin. If you peel it you can use a sharp vegetable peeler or knife. I like to cut in in half, crosswise, so you have the bulb end and the top cylinder, keep a flat side down on the cutting board for safety. Once peeled, cut the bulb end in half and scoop out the seeds. If you want to make it easy, cook the squash whole in the over for about an hour at 400 degrees (put it on a pan first). Cut it open after cooking when it is soft. Then you can use the puree in the soup recipe below.

Southwestern Butternut Squash Soup

2 tablespoon oil

½ large onion, chopped

2-3 small bell peppers, chopped

1-2 hot pepper, chopped (optional)

1-2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons oregano

¼ teaspoon cumin

½ teaspoon salt

2 cups butternut squash puree

1-2 cups water or stock

In a soup pot sauté the onion and peppers in the oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add the hot peppers, garlic, oregano, cumin and salt, stir and continue cooking for 2-3 more minutes. Add a little water if the vegetables start to brown. Add the squash puree and 1 cup of water. Puree with an immersion blender to blend in the vegetables, add additional water if desired to reach your preferred consistency. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.

More Melons for All..

As I have mentioned a few times in the newsletter, it is hard to send out melons that we can’t taste before delivering. Especially if your melon isn’t super sweet, this salad is a great way to use it.

Melon Salad/Salsa

1 cantaloupe, diced

1 cucumber, seeded and diced

1/4 cup diced red onion

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or cilantro

1 bell pepper, minced

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

Mix everything and eat immediately.

The Changing Bounty…

Last year we had very few summer squash. The crop was damaged from an insect spread virus or disease. This year we moved out squash production to a new field and have had much better success. This means that we have been harvesting squash off of our first and second plantings every week for the last four months. Instead of looking for a new recipe, I brought out my favorite old recipe for Parmesan Roasted Summer Squash here.

Parmesan Roasted Summer Squash

1 cup coarsely grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons of finely chopped fresh or dried Italian seasoning (basil, rosemary, thyme, parsley)

4 summer squash, sliced into ½ inch rounds

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

½ teaspoon garlic powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. and line a large rimmed-baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl combine the squash rounds with the olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Toss to coat. Add the Parmesan cheese and herbs and lightly toss again. In an even layer place the seasoned squash on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the squash is tender and the cheese is deeply golden.

Making Recipe Substitutions…

This week we have red flame grapes, which would make a great substitute to the dried cranberries or raisins in the butternut squash recipe below. When making changes in any recipe you can always switch out an item that brings the same components to a dish.

Butternut Squash Salad

1 butternut squash, cut into cubes

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

1/3 cup walnuts

½ cup raisins or dried cranberries, chopped

¼ cup sliced red onion

3-4 cups, spinach or chopped leafy greens

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 

1 tablespoon red or white wine vinegar 

salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

¼ cup crumbled goat cheese

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Toss the butternut squash cubes with the oil and ½ teaspoon salt. Spread out on a parchment lined baking sheet and cook in the oven for about 20-25 minutes, until tender. In the same oven, while cooking the squash, toast the nuts until fragrant, about 5 minutes.  In a large bowl, combine cooked squash, nuts, raisins, red onion and greens, drizzle with olive oil and vinegar, season with salt and pepper. Toss the salad gently and transfer to a serving platter or bowl and top with the crumbled goat cheese.

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Wellspring Charitable Gardens

Oakdale, CA 95361, USA

209-607-1887

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