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Tastes and Flavors of Fall

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I'm looking for some new ways to use winter squash and fall vegetables in concert, along with some interesting or unusual spices or herbs, to produce some healthy meals and side dishes. It would be nice to eliminate or minimize the use of butter and cream, but not necessarily elimiate those ingredients.

Any ideas?

post #2 of 13
There's been a rise in the use of squashes to replace tomato products in Italian-style cooking. Most often as a sauce, but also as a filling.

I could see some roasted/grilled squash in some Bruschetta type things. I make sweet potato rolls; you could sub in squash or pumpkin for a bread or roll.

I've made a lasagna with roasted pureed squash touched up with garlic and herbs , for the sauce. My friend did a pumpkin puree with sausage, peppers and noodles.

Pumpkin cheesecake, though a pumpkin could lend itself well to other custards or even icecream. I've always been a fan of pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. I've tried to marble a cheesecake with pumpkin and chocolate cheese cakes but not achieved what I envisioned. Perhaps even a pumpkin cobbler with chocolate accents.

There used to be an Afghan place that had pumpkin on their menu. It turned dark but translucent in their preparation with an ethereal spicy taste and an amazingly soft texture that still managed to remain upright and not runny. I have no idea how they did it.

Many of these squashes are native to the americas so think about Latin flavors. A pumpkin enchilada sauce, perhaps with some pipian? A pumpkin salsa--would have to bump up the lime or add some cider vinedgar for the acidity of the missing tomatoes. Never had pipian myself, I just know it's made with pumpkin seeds. A chili with pumpkin instead of tomatoes?

The southwestern native american food trinity was squash, beans and corn. Make a green chile stew type thing with some pork shoulder and inlclude squahs, beans and corn. Serve over fry bread though it's also gussied up with taco fixins such as cheese, tomatoes, lettuce and sour cream.

Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
post #3 of 13

Tastes Flavors of fall

the squash corn bean thing si called Three Sisters. There si a great 3 Sisters stew in Moosewood Lowfat Cookbook - think I;ll make ot tomorrow!!!
I have made pasta sauce with pumkin and beets in placw of marinara. Beiieve it or not, it tasted similar.

I always go for the simple roasted veg with rosemary, garlic and olive oil

Love butternut squash lasagna

Posted a roasted veggie soup here a few weeks ago...

Pumpkin apple crumble is great even if dessert and not the healthiest.

Same for Cran apple torte

OHHHHH I make these great sweet potato things - stuffed with black beans, corn, onion, shrooms, raisins and cashews - has lime, cumin, cinnamon and such - yummy, healthy, lowfat veggie meal
post #4 of 13
I like butternut squash gnocchi, tossed in a sage brown butter, fresh chopped rosemary in the gnocchi.

I also make a nice butternut squash lasagna, with bechamel (milk not cream), reggiano and a little mozzarell, sage, and toasted hazelnuts.

There's all sorts of varieties of squash soup.

Also some easy omelets, like caramelize onions and roasted squash, spice it up with whatever, white pepper, nutmeg, whatever you like.

Since someone mentioned Moosewood, someone told me there is a Katzen recipe for Spaghetti Squash pancakes served with sour cream that is supposed to be half decent for a simple recipe. It's online if you google.
post #5 of 13
somewhere i think i posted my recipe for pumpkin or squash turnovers. briefly, you sautee onions, add mashed baked or steamed squash or pumpkin, salt, pepper, pine nuts or pistachios and raisins, and bake in an olive oil crust. they go like mad at my christmas party and a huge one baked in a pie pan is the main course at xmas dinner for the vegetarians in the family, but enjoyed by all.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the suggestions. Some good and tasty-sounding ideas have been posted.

post #7 of 13
A friend of mine who's a chef recommended that I try this for a dinner party a few weeks back (and it was really good, except that I forgot the crucial "draining" step and it was a tad watery - lol)...and it's really easy, too.

Roast a spaghetti squash (poke holes in it first). When it's mostly done (overcooking will leave the spaghetti kind of mushy, and experimenting I've found I like it al dente better) pull it out, scoop the seed out and discard, and separate the spaghetti-like strands into a colandar and let drain -- you could also try cheesecloth to really get the moisture out, I think. Melt some butter in a saute pan and toss the squash for a minute or two with it and a little brown sugar, salt and pepper, and you have a tasty, not too heavy, fall side dish. (I think that's the whole thing, but if I missed a step, my chef friend is around here somewhere, and I'm sure he'll correct me, lol.)

I had never used spaghetti squash before this, but now I've been eating it with my favorite artichoke marinara sauce and fresh grated asiago, too -- like spaghetti, but healthier and with a bit of a crunch.
post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
I like spaghetti squash, and have been eating it for years. A favorite of mine is spaghetti squash with zucchini-corriander sauce. If that sounds interesting, I'd be happy to send you the recipe and technique.

I liker making "zucchini pasta" as well - essentially grating the zucchini into thin, spaghetti-like strands and then adding sauces and seasonings as appropriate, so the zucchini takes the place of spaghetti. Mixing thin spaghetti with the strands of spaghetti is also a good option. Over the past year or so I've found some good whole wheat and whole wheat blended pastas and spaghetti that go well with the zucchini. Actually, I use the romanesco squash as often as possible. Its firmer texture and deeper flavor add a nice dimension to zucchini pasta dishes.

post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Yes, three sisters. It's actually based on a method of growing the three crops, and has been used by many Native Americans , not only in the southwest as has been suggested. I know that the Iroquis and other northeastern tribes have used this technique. The three crops are grown together, with the beans winding their way up the corn stalks and the squash leaves shading the ground, keeping it cool and moist.

Those "sweet potao things" sound interesting and worth experimenting with. Instead of raisins, have you thought of using unsweetened dried cranberries? Most dried cranberries have been sweetened, and are too sweet and cloying for my taste. Unsweetened ones are, for me at least, plenty sweet.

post #10 of 13
I'm not a huge fan of zucchini unfortunately...I'll eat it if its the vegetable served with whatever meal I order out, lol...or, here in Maine, a lot of my friends have huge home vegetable gardens, so a lot of zucchini ends up here when I have barbeques -- so I just smile, grill it, and say thank you, lol.

Have you tried Dreamfields pasta? It's a low-carb pasta that actually tastes just like regular pasta...You can find it in higher end grocery stores and on Amazon.com. It's a staple in my house. :) (In fact, the grocery store here in town tried selling it for a couple of months, then decided to stop, and marked everything down to $0.99/box -- less than half price, so I have a healthy supply, now, he he.)
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
Although I eat zucchini, I never enjoyed it a lot. The Romanseco is similar but different enough to possibly be worth a try if you can find some that's nice and fresh.

I'm familiar with Dreamfields, but haven't tried it yet. Around here it's pretty expensive. There is a very nice Italian WW pasta that I sometimes buy, and although it's quite spendy, it's worth every penny to me. Ronzoni has their Healthy Harvest brand which was highly rated in some tests, and I almost bought a box the other day until I saw some Barilla on the shelf next to it. The Barilla contained more spaghetti and was about 1/2 the price of the Ronzoni, so I decided to try the Barilla first. Both the Barilla and the Ronzoni are a blend made with whole wheat, I don't think the Dreamfields contains any whole wheat ...

post #12 of 13
No, you're right, the Dreamfields isn't whole durum semolina, it's enriched with an added fiber blend, so overall the fiber content is higher than most pasta and the glycemic index is lower. I just like it because I find a lot of whole wheat pastas don't cook well. I have also been using a spinach fettucini pasta from DeBole's that's made with whole durum semolina, spinach powder and Jerusalem artichoke flour -- it's pretty good, too.
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Perhaps this page will interest you:

Dreamfields Pasta

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