Thursday, December 18, 2008

Spicy and Sweet Squash


This puree is a nice side-dish I came up with the other day when I was trying to tone down the natural sweetness squash. My husband loves spicy food and I have acquired quite a taste for it myself. When the kids were little, I use to make spicy condiments that he and I could add to our dishes, in order not torture our children's sensitive palates. I no longer have to do that for the three oldest ones. My six year old, on the other hand, uses the spiciness as the perfect excuse not to eat his vegetables. It makes him feel empowered which I think is healthy once in a while. All I have to do is steam some broccoli which he'll gladly eat instead of anything suspect like: Spicy Squash Puree.

This is a great side-dish paired up with a strong flavored protein such as lamb, a blackened fish or smoked tofu.

I love how simple it is to make. It literally takes five minutes to assemble, after baking the fruit/vegetable.
The spiciness of the smoked pepper is a really nice contrast to the sweetness of the squash. Add some sea salt and you are in business.


Spicy and Sweet Squash Puree
Everything I have added for richness such as the butter, sour cream or cheese is pretty much optional. It does add a lovely dimension to the dish.

2 medium size squash such as delicata, carnival or acorn
(seeds scooped out and cut into halves)
1 tablespoon of butter, or olive oil
1/4 cup lowfat sour cream
sea salt to taste
1/4 cup goat cheese gouda (optional)
1-2 tsp smoked chipotle peppers

Preheat oven to 375F.
Place squash halves on an oiled cookie-sheet, cut side down. Bake until tender when pierced with a knife (about 30 minutes)
Take out of oven and cool for ten minutes.
Carefully, scoop pulp out into a bowl. Mix in the remaining ingredients and mash until creamy. This dish will keep for a day or two. However, the longer it sits the spicier it gets.

Artsy-Foodie's Tip: Isn't it frustrating when a recipe calls for only 1 tablespoon of a 5oz can of something like tomato paste or smoked chipotle in adobo sauce? Here's what I do: I take my muffin pan and divide the can into individual tablespoon portions then I transfer the whole thing to the freezer. Once they are frozen, all I have to do is put them into an airtight container and keep them in the freezer for future use.


kat said...

Oh by I bet that is so good!

Stacey Snacks said...

Good tip about freezing the leftover portions of unused ingredients.
I just threw away a can of adobo sauce because it called for 1 tbsp and I knew I would never use it again!

Elra said...

Delicious, especially with the addition of chipoltle pepper.

Sophie said...

That's so cute that your 6 year old like some kick! I've yet to try an acorn squash, I'm missing out :D.

zebe912 said...

My hubby loves spice, but my tummy can't handle it. I wonder if he'd actually eat squash if I told him I made it extra spicy just for him. Think he'd buy it?

Salty Mouth said...

Beautiful photographs. I am a huge fan of squash, especially as a soup with a dolop of creme fraiche.

Do you ever use flavored sea salts to finish your dishes?

I ask as I hand-craft infused salts in Seattle. Coconut Garam Masala would be a lovely accent to sweetened squash. If ever so inclined, take a peak:


VeggieGirl said...


Joan Nova said...

Nice recipe...great photo!

chefectomy said...

Hi Alexa,

I am truly looking forward to making this. I love sweetness and spice. Excellent dish.


Rico said...

I am not to sure about this one but based on looks I would certainly give it a try, it looks delicious, especially when you left it in the skin. Thx for sharing.

Usha said...

What an interesting contrast in taste this recipe would provide,love it...great pictures too :-)

RecipeGirl said...

That squash is just gorgeous!

Andrea said...

I remember refusing to eat veggies as a little kid. What was I thinking? I'd never refuse this, that's for sure. I do the same thing with my tomato paste!

Marysol said...

Alexa, I wondered if 'sexy' would be the right word to describe a typical squash. But in this case, it fits. There ain't nothing typical about this spicy and sweet squash dish.

Navita said...

Hi Alexa, must say u got a gr8 here...and first time at ur blog.
Lovely almost looks like a specky banana

Do stop by at my place if u have a chance.. :)

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