I’m beginning to conclude that perhaps the delectable butternut squash does not want to be eaten.
First, these squashes seem to come with their own built-in self-defense systems:
If you grab said squashes by their stems, tiny talons will deploy, leaving itty-bitty squash-stem-sticker splinters in your flesh. I know this because, embarrassingly enough, it’s happened to me twice. (In my defense, the incidents happened weeks apart.)
Second, cutting or peeling butternut squash can temporarily turn your skin orange, and can even cause contact dermatitis in some people. (I am one of those people, lucky me!) Fortunately, consuming it once cooked doesn’t seem to cause me any problems.
For me, despite all obstacles, this tasty taupe squash is so darned delicious that I have no problem eating it against its will. (Bwah-ha-ha!) Indeed, the last time I made it, I personally ate the lion’s share of a three-pound squash in one evening. (Possibly because the recipe I used, which I will post shortly, induces squash chunks to taste surprisingly like sweet potato fries.)
So throw down your gloves (or put them on, if you don’t want your skin turning orange) and join me in conquering the butternut squash!
TO BUY: Choose a big, heavy squash with a fat neck and a small “bulb” at the end. Ideally, the skin should be smooth and blemish-free.
|Look for a squash with more of an hourglass shape than a goose neck.|
TO STORE: Keep squash in a cool dark place for up to a month. (No need to refrigerate.)
TO ENJOY: Bake, steam, or even pan-fry, according to Elizabeth Schneider in her book Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini. Better yet, roast it with cumin—check back for the recipe!