Gotta Lotta Delicata?

Delicata Squash

Yesterday was Merry Produce Wednesday, and I got a new box of fun produce to play with. One food that has been introduced to me by my produce box is the lovely delicata squash. It behaves like an acorn squash and is very similar in shape, but the skin is a sunburst of beautiful colors. Truly, any kind of winter squash could be used in this recipe, and I doubt that anyone would know the difference.

I’ve grown to really like the sweet nutty flavor of winter squashes, and I enjoy putting them in soups and stews. Sometimes, however, I like to cook them up on their own and enjoy them as a side dish. My favorite thing to do with them is to roast them in the oven and give them a little curried twist. This recipe is a little bit spicy, so you might want to use 2 tsp of curry powder instead of 3 tsp if you don’t like your food to be slightly on the warm side. I like mine spicy! If curry isn’t your thing at all, you could always just use a good sprinkling of pumpkin pie type spices– cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves… that sort of thing. That would be good too. Here’s my recipe:

Just Sweet Enough Cozy Curried Delicata Squash

Ingredients:

2 pounds of delicata (or acorn… or butternut…) squash seeded, peeled and chopped into 1/2″ cubes. This was about 3 medium sized whole squash.

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

2-3 tsp curry powder

2 tsp olive oil

cooking spray

Directions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place chunks of squash in a bowl, and add the salt, cinnamon, curry powder and olive oil. Mix well coating the pieces of squash in the oil and spice mixture. Coat a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Spread the squash on the baking sheet in a single layer making sure that each chunk of squash is touching the pan. Spritz the top of the squash with the cooking spray. Roast in the 450 degree oven for 35 minutes.

This makes 6 servings. Unofficial ww points: 1 point per serving

I usually attack a squash like this by cutting it in half so that I can scoop the seeds out first with a spoon.

Getting At the Seeds

I then cut the squash, still in its peel, into wedges along the ridges because this makes it much easier to peel with my vegetable peeler. 

dscn0223After I peel the wedges, I chop them into cubes about 1/2″ thick and add them to the bowl with the good stuff!

Bowl of Squashy GoodnessIt is important to make sure you spread the squash pieces out in a single layer on the baking sheet. The bits that are touching the sheet will be the ones that get the most browned and caramelized.

On the SheetAnd… this is the finished product!

Done!I had some for dinner with some turkey meatloaf and green beans, and I have plenty to enjoy over the next few days.

Ready to go in the Fridge

Sweetie Pie’s note about servings: Since I like to make big batches of soups and vegetables like this one, I’ve learned an easy way to measure servings. I used to try to eyeball the proper amount and divide the batch into a bunch of plastic containers. This was not the most accurate way to measure, and it left me with a cluttered up refrigerator full of little containers. Now when I make a big batch of something, I put the storage bowl on my food scale and weigh the whole batch. I keep a notepad on the side of my fridge where I record the total number of grams (I find grams the easiest) of the batch of whatever it is, and then I divide the total number of grams by the number of desired servings and make a note of the number of grams per serving. This way, I can put one big storage container in the refrigerator instead of a bunch of annoying little containers, and I can accurately measure out a serving at a time.

Now, just for fun, here is a picture of today’s cup of tea. I bought some fun holiday decaf teas, and I’m still enjoying them. My goal is to finish the Christmas teas before Valentine’s Day. Today I had a cup of Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride by Celestial Seasonings. The name reminds me of the “Santa’s Super Sleigh” song from About a Boy. What a great movie. Anyway, I hope you are cozy wherever you are.

Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride

 


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10 Comments

Filed under Food, Uncategorized, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Success Story, Weight Watchers

10 responses to “Gotta Lotta Delicata?

  1. EnglishGarden

    The pictures are wonderful. I like the idea of the squash but would have a difficult time finding them in my area. It is a good movie and tea is nice too.

  2. Hi, English Garden! Thanks for the compliment on the pictures. I’m still trying to figure out the ins and outs of food photography!

    I suspect that delicata squash would be hard to find in MOST places, but I hope that won’t stop you from trying this recipe. I have made it with butternut squash, and it tasted just the same. Any of those hearty winter squashes would work just fine.

    I hope you are staying warm. Have a great weekend!

  3. Amy

    My first merry produce Thursday was a semi-success. They accidentally doubled my order which was good because, hey, free stuff, but also bad because I seriously can’t eat it all before it goes off. My pack consisted of apples, pears, oranges, and mango, of the fruit variety; and of the vegetable variety: cucumbers, carrots, rocket, romaine lettuce, and more kale than you can even begin to imagine. I guess it was this week’s blue light special. Either that, or kale is what they use instead of bubble wrap or styrofoam peanuts? I need kale recipes as a matter of urgency!!

  4. Ha ha ha! I’m envisioning you surrounded by a forest of kale. At least kale shrinks down a lot when you cook it so it might not be quite as bad as it seems. I like to chop mine up and then saute it until it is wilted in a tiny bit of olive oil with a crushed garlic clove, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes. It isn’t fancy, but I think it is pretty good. I’ve also been known to toss it into soup. Let me know what you do with it!!

    Well, my box this week also had rocket in it as well as cucumbers, carrots, butternut squash, onions, celery and roma tomatoes in the veggie category and apples, pears, grapefruit, bananas and tangerines in the fruit category. I love those things, but I’m really ready for it to be berry season again!

    Next time I ship a package, I know what I’m using for bubblewrap! Hee hee.

  5. Lynne

    I’m impressed you can cut through a raw winter squash. I swear I’m going to take a finger tip off trying to do that. I usually just bake my squash in it’s skin and cut it after the fact. But then I can’t roast it up like you did! So I’ll have to try cutting it raw.

    I love the suggestion about measuring the total dish and dividing by desired servings. I suffer from a ton of little containers in the fridge just like you described. Weighing and dividing makes a lot of sense!

  6. LOL! I figure I burn some extra calories sawing my way through a big ol’ tough squash. I do try hard to keep the squash firmly planted on the cutting board and use the knife as a lever. That seems like the safest way to me. You are definitely right that it can be hazardous. I once tried zapping one in the microwave for a few seconds to soften it up before chopping. It made it tougher to peel, but a little easier to cut. It’s a trade-off, I guess. That’s an option. I think I’ll put my heart rate monitor the next time I chop one up and see how many calories I burn. Hee hee.

    As for the weighing and dividing, it has transformed my fridge into a much friendlier place. I love the food scale!! I’m always looking for an easier way to do things. Suggestions are always welcome too!

  7. Lynne

    Yeah, it worked! I was able to cut through a butternut squash with no injuries, peel it (although I need to get a stronger/sturdier vegetable peeler), cut it up, and roast it. It tasted great! Plus, my 11 month old had started rejecting baked squash but loved the roasted variety.

    Your blog is great. I also do WW and being a picture-oriented gal, all your cooking pictures really help me out. Thanks!

  8. Good for you! I’m glad you survived the squash unscathed and even happier that your kiddo liked it. I do think roasted veggies can easily be a finger food. I say that because… sometimes… I use my fingers. 🙂

    Thanks for the compliment. I’m really having fun with the pictures, and I’m glad they are useful!! I hope WW is going well for you, and that you are finding lots of healthy things that you love to eat. I think that’s key!

    Thanks for letting me know that you liked the squash. 😉

  9. I have to admit, the focus of my attention when reading this post was your cookbooks! I love that shot of them in the background.

  10. Michele

    A hint for cutting winter squash: microwave it whole 1 or 2 minutes (depending on size) first — the squash peel will soften up enough to make halving and peeling much easier. I would leave he peel on and bake it in thin crescents — makes for a prettier presentation and the peel on some squash is edible (if it’s not, the diner can cut off the peel or eat with her fingers then discard the peel).

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