Friday, November 19, 2010

Squash Me Softly

In my Chinatown wanderings, I stumbled upon a large, green, pumpkin-looking item. I lifted one that was pre-cut (in half), schlepped it to the register and asked how much it cost. "$2.15." the lady in black (that's me!).

So there I was, sitting at my kitchen table, staring at a large, green, pumpkin-looking thing that was staring back at me. I knew I hadn't met my match, but I didn't know yet what to do with this bad boy. And hence the googling began. I knew it had to be some sort of squash, so I started with that little tidbit and eventually narrowed it down to Kabocha squash. I targeted some recipes about how to use it, and decided I would go with soup because--per usual--I wanted something warm, cozy, and creamy. I guess I've finally figured out the pattern emerging in my food consumption.

I basically followed this recipe on La Fuji Mama to a tee and was very happy with the final product. It lasted me about 4 meals, which was great penny pinching and made me one very happy lady in black.



1/2 kabocha squash ($2.15)
1/2 can coconut milk (full can costs $1.09)
1 cup of chicken stock - or 1 tsp of chicken buillon and some water ($1?)
1/2 yellow onion (full onion costs $0.40)
A little olive oil or butter
Salt and pepper (and some cayenne/red pepper flakes if you like spice)

The Grand Total: $4.64 for at least 4 servings, that's $1.16 per serving


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut your Kabocha squash in half, if it isn't precut. Be very careful - the skin is thick and hard to cut through (don't cut yourself!). Take out all the guts and seeds.

 Put a little olive oil or butter on the flesh of the squash, prick it, then place it face down on a baking dish. Bake for about 40 minutes to an hour, or until it's soft.

While it's baking, caramelize some onions in some olive oil in a sautee pan (don't know how to caramelize onions? click here!). You can also roast the squash seeds to use as a garnish.

When the squash is done cooking, scoop out the good stuff and toss the skin. Then, throw it in a food processor with half a can of coconut milk, 1 cup of chicken stock, and the caramelized onions.

Serve hot garnished with spicy roasted squash seeds.

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