How to have fun with a squash: Episode 2 + recipe

January 29th, 2012 Comments 0

You may remember the alien surprise I got when making squash soup a year and a half ago.  Here is the second episode of this adventure:

Accidental Squash Spiral!

I started by chopping the top off and using it in a stir-fry earlier in the week, but you could try this with the whole squash. 

1. Peel your squash.
2. Take a sharp knife, and aiming to slice a disc an inch thick, cut into the flesh, catching the blade at just the right angle so that as the knife rotates around the squash, your circular incision travels a much longer distance than you expected, making a surprising and beautiful spiral.

spiral squash 1

3. Find an extra pair of hands to help you photograph it.

spiral squash 2

4. Make soup.

Squash, Ginger and Lemon soup
This soup is based on the holy trinity of squash, ginger and lemon.  The squash is sweet, earthy, tasty and orange, the ginger is hot, pungent, earthy and kicky, and the lemon is sharp and zingy.  This soup looks and tastes like sunshine in a bowl and always makes me happy in winter. You can add more or less of each ingredient.  By experimenting over the years I have found that there is an upper limit of ginger tolerance.  You can add other ingredients, but don’t be fooled, all you really need is the holy soup trinity.

Ingredients:
Peeled and cubed butternut squash (remove innards)
1 inch of finely diced ginger root,
1 lemon (none of that bottled muck)
Salt and pepper
optional
Garlic cloves
Chilli
Chicken/veg stock
Soy sauce

Boil squash and ginger for about 20 minutes in enough water to nearly cover the squash in the pan.
When squash is soft, take off heat and mash with a fork or masher (easier than mashing potatoes).
Add the juice of half a lemon (I always add the lemon once the soup is off the boil to preserve more of the vitamins – I haven’t done any scientific testing to see if this works, but it does at least add a placebo effect of more vitamins)
Add seasoning, stock or soy sauce to taste.
Add more lemon and/or ginger to taste.
Gently heat again if it needs it.
Serve with homemade bread and butter.

squash soup

This soup will separate overnight into squash pulp and liquid, so just stir it up again for your day two helpings. 

I’ve never written a recipe here before, so if you try it, please let me know what you think!

August Day for you

September 21st, 2011 Comments 0

A wonderful day in August, just when I needed a break.  I had been working too hard, and neglecting to breathe, sleep and have relationships with the people around me.  This turned out to be a perfect day.  Walking, talking, exploring.

Beach with magic island,

1 beach trees

Welsh waters,

2 sea

a broken heart, although in reality it was very much a heart healing sort of day,

3 broken heart stone

friend,

4 caterpillar

hundreds of apples ripening,

5 apples

forest,

6 forest

In the middle of our walk we came across a Mediaeval jousting tournament festival, with mock hangings and dressing up.  Not what I was expecting.  Festival season is wonderful.

Viaduct for trains,

7 viaduct

At the end of the walk, sat eating an ice cream, a plane flew low overhead,

8 aeroplane

I tried to capture the plane with the ice cream in the same frame, but my camera was too slow (bloody digital technology),  you can just see the plane disappearing behind the trees.

9 ice cream

It was strawberries and cream.

Red flowers and berries,91 red plants

Where in the world could all of these lovely things live together? 

Obernut

August 13th, 2011 Comments 0

Today I cooked and ate this here Obernut.

Obernut

A rare delicacy full of yum.

The Potato Empire

April 9th, 2011 Comments 1

The Peas gatherThe Peas gather

and bow down before –

The Potato EMpire!!!!!

The Potato Empire

Waiting in hushed silence for the arrival of –

The EGG DICTATOR!!!!!!!!

Potato empire with egg dictator

Which looks strangely anatomical from this angle…

Mister Tomato Eyes Swiss Chard Hair

April 8th, 2011 Comments 2

Mister Tomato Eyes Swiss Chard Hair says – Beaker lunch

“I look like Beaker from The Muppets”

Lunchtime Spiral

April 7th, 2011 Comments 0

Lunchtime spiral says, lunchtime spiral

“I am lovely, ”
also
”You will need a snack in 45 minutes.  Do you have any beetroot?”

Mrs Eggy eyes Pepper lips

April 5th, 2011 Comments 0

Mrs eggy eyes pepper lips

says “Do you like my earrings?”

Mr Noodle face Radish ears

April 4th, 2011 Comments 0

Mr Noodle face Radish ears

says EAT ME!!!!!!

OmNOm nom nom nom nom!

How to sprout butternut squash seeds unintentionally

September 16th, 2010 Comments 1

I discovered this quite by accident.  First get your squash, then cut off the top in exactly the right place so that the very tip of the cavernous hole inside the squash is cut through – leaving a tiny hole in the middle of your cut surface.  This is the bit I did quite by accident.  Then eat this lovely top bit.  Butternut squash, lemon and ginger soup is particularly recommended.

Leave the rest of the squash to flounder unnoticed in the fridge for, oh, at least a week, maybe two, depending on how hungry you are.

Then every time you open the fridge door, just enough light will get through the tiny hole to wake the seeds up, and they will find themselves in the comfort and luxury of the belly of their mama squash, and begin to grow.

If you have left it long enough, be prepared for an alien surprise when you next cut open the squash to make your soup…

sprouted butternut squash seeds inside squash 1

These ones were so happy here they made long lustrous roots and big leaves.

sprouted butternut squash seeds inside squash 2

sprouted butternut squash seeds inside squash 3

So there you have it!

More Lovely Spring

September 14th, 2010 Comments 0

spring green trees

Here be hobbits, if you wait long enough…

hobbit river

Idyllic, but, in fact, real:

light through leaves

just checking back on the hobbit:

river hobbit

soon-to-be apples

 apple blossom

and a meeting with the Elf King! to be continued…

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