by Francesca Patterson

This week has felt like two seasons are fighting for their time in the spotlight. The mornings have been too breezy to leave without a light jacket, almost as if mother nature understands Labor Day as the end of summer too. However, by noon, the summer sun has returned to remind us of how we are still able to have tomatoes and watermelons in September. School is back in session, traffic is back to normal, and I have even seen a yellow leaf or two ‘fall’ right in front of me. 
 
By far my most anticipated aspect of Fall arriving is the harvest of Fall squashes. Butternut, honey-nut, acorn, spaghetti, delicata, they are all so special and delicious. Fall squash is sweet in taste and is full of fiber, vitamins, and potassium. In my opinion, they are the true comfort food of the produce world. 
 
The one I will highlight for this recipe is called Delicata squash. It is the long one that is yellow with green stripes on it. To pick a good one, you will want the background to be yellow or even a little orange and the stripes to be dark green. The best part about this squash is that it has thinner skin, which makes it more edible. For this recipe, I add water to the pan in order to allow the skin to steam. This makes the skin as soft as the squash inside so that you can eat it without peeling. If desired, you can peel the delicata after scooping the seeds out but before slicing it into rings. However, they hold up better with the skin on. The squash rings also taste great alone as healthy alternatives to fries. Feel free to play with the seasoning or salad combinations on top. 
 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Delicata Squash (cut lengthwise, seeds removed, sliced into 1/3 inch half rings) 
  • Arugula or salad mix of your choice
  • 1 Tsp dried cranberries
  • 1/2 of a Fuji Apple (thinly sliced) 
  • Feta cheese 
  • 3 Tsp olive oil
  • Salt (to taste) 
  • Pepper (to taste) 

 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
  2. Slice the delicata squash in half lengthwise and cut into 1/3 inch rings that resemble half-moons. Place into a large mixing bowl with 2 tsp olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to mix thoroughly. 
  3. Arrange in a single layer in a baking dish. Add a thin layer of water to the bottom of the dish. Cook for 45 minutes, or until golden brown. 
  4. After it’s done, arrange the squash on a plate. Top them with your greens, feta cheese, cranberries, apples, the remaining tsp of olive oil, salt, and pepper. 

 

 

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