Welcome to the blog for Colgate University's interdisciplinary course on food. This is the place to keep up with what students in the course are experiencing in their work at Common Thread Community Farm and through their everyday encounters with food.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Jester Squash - Not Just Decoration!

A couple of weeks ago, Kori, Sarah and I all harvested butternut squash, pumpkins and a small, green and yellow variety of winter squash. I immediately thought the green squash were gourds, the awkward and inedible fruits present in fall table settings and made out of wax for the Autumnal Pier 1 collection. I thought it was weird that the common thread farm would waste its time planting and harvesting an ugly and inedible plant, but alas, the Jester squash is so much more.

Jester Squash, as seen below, is a winter squash variety often compared to the Acorn squash - sometimes called the striped acorn. Don't let the slightly-bizarre complexion fool you - Jester squash has superior eating quality, according to this. Its thin skin is packed with nutrients and antioxidants, but doesn't have the thick, rubbery texture that are problematic with some other squash varieties.

What to do with Jester squash... or really any squash for that matter...
Because of the thin skin, Jester squash can really be used for anything you might do with squash - dicing, roasting, sauteeing, stuffing with quinoa because quinoa is everywhere these days...
One unique recipe I found was for Apple-Stuffed Jester Squash here.
1 Jester Squash, halved
1 Gala Apple, diced
2 tbsp Salted Butter
2 tbsp Maple Syrup
1 tsp lemon juice concentrate
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375.
Combine butter, syrup, lemon juice, cinnamon and apple in a bowl. Place mixture into hollow of each squash half. Set in a baking dish and roast for ~45 mins or until squash is soft
Sprinkle with chopped walnuts, if desired.

This dish could be a side or even a dessert. Move beyond the basic pumpkin spice latte and experiment with these fun fall flavors! =O

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