Another week, another new vegetable! This week we’re including some of our deliciously tender spaghetti squash. As you've probably heard, spaghetti squash is a great substitute for pasta and you can’t have pasta without garlic so we’ve included some heads of garlic as well!
Although you may have heard of this incredible squash, chances are, if you’ve seen it in the store, you’ve passed it by because it’s large and intimidating and at the end of a long day, who wants to experiment at dinner time with an unfamiliar vegetable? Not to worry though. We’ll walk you through it!
This particular variety is very forgiving. Just about any way you can think of to apply heat can be used to cook spaghetti squash. The big question is: to cut or not to cut before cooking? You can do it either way. Here are the pros and cons of each:
Cutting Up Spaghetti Squash Before Cooking
Advantages: It cooks faster. Disadvantages: Like any winter squash, hacking it up takes muscle and a sharp knife or cleaver. It's also a bit more work to scrape out the seeds and pulp when they are raw.
Method: Just get in there and cut it in half (lengthwise) or quarters. You don't want to cut it up too small unless you want short strands. Scrape out the seeds and pulp as you would with any squash or pumpkin.
Bake cut side down about 30 to 40 minutes at 375 F. Microwave 6 to 8 minutes (let stand for a few minutes afterwards) Boil 20 minutes or so.
Separate strands by running a fork through from one end to the other. Viola! You have “pasta!”
Cooking Spaghetti Squash Whole
Advantages: It's easier. Disadvantages: It takes longer to cook, and you need to watch out for burns when removing the pulp and seeds.
Method: Pierce the squash several times with a sharp knife. (Do this especially if you're microwaving it, or you may end up with a "Squash Explosion.")
Bake about an hour in the oven at 375 F. Microwave 10 to 12 minutes, then let stand for 5 minutes or so afterward to finish steaming. Boil for half an hour or so. Slow Cooker/Crock Pot: Put it in with a cup of water and let it go on low all day (8 to 10 hours).
When done, cut open "at the equator" (not lengthwise), remove seeds and pulp (I use tongs and an oven mitt -- it is HOT) and separate strands with a fork.
Once you’ve removed the seeds, don’t throw them away. Any squash seeds can be roasted just like pumpkin seeds (pumpkin is a kind of squash) for a low-carb and delicious snack!
Like pumpkin and other winter squashes, whole uncooked spaghetti squash is best stored between 50 to 60 degrees, and will last up to six months this way. If you have a room in your home that isn't well-heated, maybe you can use some space in it as a "root cellar" to store onions, squash, apples, and the like. If not, don’t worry. Spaghetti squash will keep several weeks at room temperature.
So now that you know how to prepare it, here’s a great recipe to use our squash, garlic, onions and some tomatoes as well as our delicious basil!
As we mentioned in last week's newsletter, August is the best month of the year on our farm. The berries are ripe, the veggies are at their peak, the flowers are in bloom...
And we have 12 new additions to our chicken flock!
These little guys just hatched this weekend. Most of them are Auracanas but one or two may be half Buff Orpington.
Here they are with their very proud mothers. That's Polly on the left and Scotch on the right.
As you can see from the chicks, Auracanas come in a variety of colors.
Unfortunately, they don't stay this cute for long. In just a few weeks, they will be awkward teenagers and by the time the rain begins to fall once more, they will be full grown chickens. But for now, like the weather, they are perfect and we are enjoying every minute!