Trying out recipes to pass on to you.

the case of the mystery squash

Posted: September 20th, 2009 | Author: leah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , | 7 Comments »

like a culinary nancy drew i’m trying to identify what squash / gourd i have here on the far left. any ideas?

my sweet mommy brings me lots of veggies from her garden each time she visits and recently brought me a spaghetti squash (pale yellow, right) this green guy and some cute little watermelons. She also wasn’t sure what kind of squash it might be. she has an assortment but it didn’t look like any she planted.

from my limited hard squash cooking / eating experience, i know it isn’t butternut, spaghetti or acorn squash. since squash are on display for eating and fall decorating now, i even dug through piles at the store to see if i could i.d. this one. nope. flipped through a veggie book. nope. looked online. nope. it’s shaped most like a spaghetti squash—sort of like a fat long football. but the skin isn’t smooth. it has a bit of a ridge to it. but not as deep as an acorn squash and certainly not squat like they are. the color isn’t like anything i looked up.

could it be a really freaking fat zucchini?!?!

so here’s the plan. i’m going to roast some root veggies later this week and try to figure out what this is by cutting it in half and roasting it along with them. thanks to the research i have a new found texture / taste education  on gourds. of course jack-o-lantern types are stringy and spaghetti squash has that cool noddle texture when scooped out but it seems most have a meaty, not stringy texture like a cross between a sweet potato and butternut squash. i can vouch for the acorn squash having this texture, too.

in the meantime, if you have any ideas leave them for me here. i’ll be sure to report back.


the two hour sandwich

Posted: June 19th, 2009 | Author: leah | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments »

I had a few plans for today. They did not include inventing a sandwich.

But I did. It is fantastic. And it should retail for $7. $12 if you include the love, heart and soul that went in to it. And it all started with a yellow pepper.

Can’t remember the last time I bought a yellow pepper. But as I held it in my hand in the produce aisle my gaze next locked on a yellow tomato. I recalled yellow squash at home. The sandwich was born. It took two hours of cultivation…worth every second.

First I roasted the yellow pepper and tomatoes. I roast red peppers often and snack on them. You should, too.  Set the oven to broil and 400 degrees. Stab it a few times with a knife, rub some olive oil on it and pop it in the oven. Tomatoes roasted are a real treat. I usually do it to get rid of cherry tomatoes. Slice, sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Traditionally I would do these at a lower temp, about 300-350 and for 2 hours or so. But there was a sandwich to make. So high heat, about 45 minutes.

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Meanwhile, I sliced up the yellow squash and a white onion. I thought the onion crunch would be a good addition to all that yellow. Salt, pepper and olive on both then grilled. Squash gets sweet and almost buttery when grilled—a great way to try it if you think you don’t like it. The onions soften up just a bit and get a nice char and caramelized flavor.

 My kitchen helper:

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I had chosen a white sandwich roll at the store and in hindsight wish I had grabbed a sub roll because I’ve named the sandwich…drumroll…the Yellow Submarine. I know. I’m clever.

I knew this sandwich would have mayo but it needed a bump. I thought about basil or rosemary but I wasn’t feeling herbs. I remembered a chili in adobo sauce I had frozen (I don’t throw away anything!) mixed about 1 tablespoon with 2 tablespoons mayo and smeared on bread. Look at the lovely red! Zingy, not spicy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had made bacon for the hubs and added two slices for crunch and saltiness. On top, I piled the roasted yellow pepper and yellow tomato slices.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next, the grilled onions and yellow squash

 

 

 

 

 

 

And for good measure (and more yellow) melted marbled Colby and Monterey jack cheese.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And the finished product.

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was genius! In every bite I could taste every delicious ingredient. The cool mayo with smoky and spicy chilies, the charred but sweet yellow pepper and squash, the caramelized flavor of the grilled onions and roasted yellow tomatoes, crunchy, salty bacon—and I could have taken or left the cheese. Just the kind of sandwich I’d pay big bucks for at a restaurant—and I came up with it! <pats back, wipes face>