Experimentation of Taste

A food blog that catalogs discovery of foods available through CSA Farms Shares and other arenas and the recipes to enhance the flavors.


WHB: Thanksgiving

Tabblo: Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving was different for me this year because I didn't go anywhere to celebrate the holiday. Years past I have traveled far (the Middle East) or close (Walla Walla - the home of Washington's sweet onion) but never stayed at home and cooked in my own kitchen. Former plans to have the big dinner at our place were scrapped in order to join friends here in town. Our hostess is a lady I call the Buffet Dinner master. She knows how to make meals simple and easy for large groups. She has three grown sons who I'm sure kept the kitchen busy. She never bats an eye when the church asks her to cook for over 100 people. Earlier this month, our church had a big dinner without her and some of the rest of us had to step up to the plate. It sure made me grateful for her past efforts.

The one thing that churchable and I missed was going around through the group and mentioning what we are thankful for this year. Even though we come from different background this is a tradition that both sides of the family celebrate. So I will do so here

Things that I am thankful for this year:
  • For churchable, he is such a loving husband and the last year and a half of marriage has been great.
  • For this blog, I finally have find a focus for my creative energy. (I hated writing, but here I am writing and loving it.)
  • For my friends, they encourage me even if they never comment here.
  • For another holiday season with my mother-in-law, Meemo is doing a little bit better.
  • For getting to celebrate churchable's 31st birthday with friends and great food. (His birthday was on Thursday)
  • My family's continued safety in the Middle East.
  • Being able to help my grandparents this spring when they needed assistance.

Now for the really good stuff - the food and recipes. Surprise! I stuck to squash for my contribution to Thanksgiving. I had quite a pile of acorn squash that needed using before it turned bad and vandalized the neighborhood. Thanksgiving was a good excuse to use them before that happened. It was also a good chance to use one of my mom's holiday recipes. My CSA share also contained a good supplement for the holiday - half a sugar pumpkin. I roasted it up and handed off the pie making to churchable with the help of my farmer's recipe. He is the pie maker in our household, since he likes pie so much. He never wants a cake for his bday but a pie always works. I also heard that there was a dearth of cranberries for a side so I whipped up some fresh cranberry sauce. I so refuse to be
subjected to a can of relish with the metal rings molded into its sides, but it
seems we all feel that way here in blog land.

This is my post for Weekend Herb Blogging which is being hosted by Haalo of Cook (almost) Anything At Least Once If you would like further information on squash, please head over to my post at the beginning of the month.

Squash Apple Bake

Serves 12
  • 4 lbs Winter Squash
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1/2 c butter, melted
  • 1/8 c flour
  • 1/2 c cranberries, fresh or frozen
  • 2 t salt
  • 1 t nutmeg
  • 4 baking apples; cored and cut into 1/2 in slices

  1. Halve each squash; remove the seeds and fibers.  Pare the squash.  Cut into 1/2" slices or cubes.
  2. Mix together the brown sugar, butter, flour, salt, and nutmeg.
  3. Arrange the squash in an ungreased rectangle baking dish (12x7x2 in).  Top with apple slices.  Sprinkle with cranberries.  Sprinkle with sugar mixture.  Cover and bake in a 350F oven until squash is tender, 50-60 minutes

Fresh Organic Pumpkin Pie

This recipe makes 1 pie.  Our squash was big enough to make 2.

You have two choices to prep the squash.  I recommend roasting the squash in a 400F oven for an hour or two.  If liquid oozes out and starts to burn, don't worry this will help the squash be drier and have a better texture.  The pumpkin should be soft when pushed.  My farmer suggested boiling the pumpkin till it was soft.  (I hate peeling squash so I did not use this route.)  Then you drain the pumpkin for about 1 1/2 hour. When dry mash well. Then place into containers to freeze or make a pie.

  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1 t ground ginger
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 1/2 c fresh pumpkin
  • 2 lg eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 c hot milk
  • Your favorite pie crust (churchable's grandmother's recipe - if we ask he may share)

see the link above for instructions. I will post the instructions later.

Fresh Cranberry-Orange Relish

Makes 2 1/2 cups

  • 12 oz fresh cranberries
  • 2 md seedless oranges cut into 1/8ths do not peel
  • 1/2 - 3/4 c sugar
  • 1/2 t ginger (optional)

Put half the cranberries and one of the oranges into the food processor;  Transfer to a storage container and process the other half.  Combine the two mixtures and stir in sugar to taste.  Refrigerate, ideally for several days.  Always tastes better if made in advance.

Since I also had tons of squash seeds, I decided to find a recipe to roast them.   I found the following recipe in Everyday Food.

Spicy Pumpkin Seeds

Everyday Food October 2004

Preheat oven to 350F.  In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, and 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice; toss to coat.  Spread on a rimmed baking sheet; bake until puffed and browned,
about 10 minutes

Recipe Follows


Sugar High Friday #25: Truffles meet the deep black

Tabblo: Black Russian truffles

I am pleased to contribute a truffle recipe to Sugar High Friday!  Actually I'm including two different truffle recipes - one of these was a success and the other was a tasty failure.  The failure caused a little delay in this post, so I'm blaming it on truffle trouble.  Maybe some of you truffle experts can help me make it right.

My husband dragged me out today to White Pass, our nearest Washington ski resort.  I sat in the lodge and wrote this while he hit the slopes.  I
brought Eat Feed's podcast on "Chocolate - The history" for company.  Some of the trivia presented is fascinating.  We have all associated chocolate as a potion of love.  Chocolate has spread throughout our society to focus on every aspect of our life.  So far that if you love chocolate and want to swim in it.  You can! at the Hershey pa in Hershey, PA.

Chocolate originated in Central America where the Mayans used it in religious ceremonies.  Europeans got a hold of it and added large quantities of sugar.  Thus, we in the 21st century wouldn't second-guess that chocolate is a subject of Sugar High Friday.  When it was introduced in Europe it was a high society drink. Clubs were created just for Hot Chocolate.  These places eventually became coffeehouses when coffee was introduced later in the century. 

It is difficult to work with chocolate because it has to go through excessive
processing.  Northern Europe started producing chocolate bars for everyone - not just the upper class.  Hot chocolate remained popular, but it was a very thick, bitter drink.  In America, Hershey chocolate brought the product to the mass consumer.  Afterwards came M&M/Mars.  (Mars was originally a partner of Hershey).  Our soldiers were given Hershey bars with each meal when they were assigned overseas along with a pack of cigs.  The chocolate bars are still given out, but cigarettes are now out of vogue.  We are a nation in love with chocolate.  In fact it seems ubiquitous. 

When I was sixteen, I could not eat chocolate.  This wasn't because mom forbade it, rather my body seems to reject overly sugary foods.  I had so much trouble with it that I could not serve any chocolate desserts at my high school food service without getting horrible sick.  I still have troubles with this, but I recently got some help with my allergies from a naturopath.  That and some restraint seems to be working.  Sugar high Friday wouldn't have been recognized in my youth since my parents considered me sugar-hyperactive.  I was able to follow my own sugar pursuits in the 10th grade when I was sent to boarding school in Germany.  This led me to prefer European dark chocolate. Since it has less sugar, there is the added benefit that it doesn't bother my digestive system so much.  My school in Germany was 45 minutes from Switzerland and France.  I had immediate access to some of the worlds best chocolate and cheese.  I don't know which lured me more.  What a great year!  15 years old and surrounded by great food and wonderful people.

There are two different types of cocoa powder.  Basic cocoa powder is bitter by itself.  By mixing it with an alkaline material, it becomes Dutch processed cocoa powder.  This is not as bitter and is well suited for non-baked foods. Other types of powder are fine for baking since the cooking process and other ingredients reduce the bitterness on their own. 

I struggled most of the month to concoct a truffle idea that was different from the basic chocolate, cream and coating.  Inspired by the holidays and the idea of parties with mixed drinks I lit on the idea of trying to make White Russian truffles.  My other favorite drink, the Appletini, was ruled out as unfriendly towards chocolate. 

I also attempted Black Russian truffles.  These turned out perfectly.  The White Russians, on the other hand weren't so hot.  I think this comes from my inexperience with the white chocolate. 

My Black Russian truffle yields a rush of chocolate flavor enhanced by espresso powder.  I also did not want to do a normal coating since nuts, coconut flakes or any of the other basics wouldn't fit well with the flavor.  Doing a tempered chocolate coating, however, takes too much patience for me.  Beware.  If you dislike coffee, steer clear of this truffle.  My husband took one bite and and handed me the other half.  He thought the coffee flavor was too intense.  I love my coffee, however, and think this situation is fine. 

The White Russian ended up as a soupy-sweet, smooth cream.  It was very much like a White Russian drink.  I even attempted to try the soup with the powdered milk I set aside as a coating.  It tasted great.  Too bad it refused to work out correctly.

Black Russian

Makes 10 truffles
  • 4oz bittersweet dark cocoa chocolate, broken up into small chunks.
  • 1 T unsalted butter
  • 3 T heavy cream
  • 1 t light corn syrup
  • 3 t Vodka
  • 2 t Kahlua
  • 1/4 c instant espresso powder, for coating truffles

  1. Place chopped chocolate and butter into a medium glass mixing bowl.  Microwave for 30 seconds.  Remove and stir, and repeat once more.  Set aside.
  2. In a butter warmer or extra small pan, heat the cream and corn syrup over medium heat till simmering.
  3. Remove from the heat and pour over the melted chocolate; let stand 2 minutes.  Use a rubber spatula to stir gently until the mixture is smooth and creamy.  Gently stir in the alcohol.  Place bowl into the fridge for 1 hour.
  4. Use a melon baller or a mini ice cream scoop, scoop out onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and return to the fridge for 30 min.
  5. Remove the truffles from the fridge and shape into balls by rolling with your hands.  (To keep clean you can use plastic gloves.)
  6. Dip formed ball into the espresso powder and roll till coated evenly.
  7. Allow to rest one hour in the fridge.  The truffles should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.  Serve at room temperature so that the flavors are allowed to meld.

White Russian

Makes 10 truffles (supposedly)
  • 4oz pure white chocolate, broken up into small chunks.
  • 1 T unsalted butter
  • 3 T heavy cream (I think this was too much)
  • 1 t light corn syrup
  • 3 t Vodka
  • 2 t Kahlua
  • 1/4 c instant milk powder, for coating truffles

  1. Place chopped chocolate and butter into a medium glass mixing bowl.  Microwave for 30 seconds.  Remove and stir, and repeat once more.  Set aside.
  2. In a butter warmer or extra small pan, heat the cream and corn syrup over medium heat till simmering.
  3. Remove from the heat and pour over the melted chocolate; let stand 2 minutes.  Use a rubber spatula to stir gently until the mixture is smooth and creamy.  Gently stir in the alcohol.  Place bowl into the fridge for 1 hour.
  4. Use a melon baller or a mini ice cream scoop, scoop out onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and return to the fridge for 30 min. (This concoction sat in my fridge for 3 hours, then 2 more in the freezer without setting up)
  5. Remove the truffles from the fridge and shape into balls by rolling with your hands.  (To keep clean you can use plastic gloves.)
  6. Dip formed ball into the powdered milk and roll till coated evenly.
  7. Allow to rest one hour in the fridge.  The truffles should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.  Serve at room temperature so that the flavors are allowed to meld.

Recipe Follows


WHB: Squash goes blonde

This may be my last blog for a week!  Tomorrow I'm headed to the Spoke Vegas (aka Spokane, WA) to visit my in-laws who live in an internet-free home.  This isn't their choice, rather it has to do with bad luck of two broken computers.  More bad luck may head their way as I am scheduled to arrive around the same time as their new Macintosh computer.  In my college days I was notorious for breaking Macs so I hope the new machine is made of sturdier stuff.  Although we would like to go to Spokane for Thanksgiving, we made alternate plans when my husband, Churchable, was supposed to be working a shift job at the mill.

We feel it is important for us to visit since my mother-in-law "Meemo" is not doing well in her 3+ year long struggle against cancer.  I am blessed to have been given the pleasure to meet and get to know her.  She is a wonderful sweet woman.  Your prayers for her are appreciated. I'm going to cram in my Weekend Herb Blogging entry before I cram my family and the two dogs in the car for the 6 hour trip. On a positive note, Churchable is bribing me with stops at knitting stores.  There won't be a break from cooking either since Meemo will need our help around the house. Look for other less frazzled bloggers at Saffron Trail on Monday.

The travel plans interrupted what promised to be a rather leisurely week.  I spent most of Monday dreaming up menus and finishing up a new wool sweater to fill in the winter wardrobe. Our plans for the week changed over dinner of warm chicken salad (which needed a boiled egg) and turnip fries.  Plans for dinner changed earlier when I substituted Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Squares for what would-have-been a lovely squash soufflé.

This menu detour satisfied my cravings for a cookie that began when I read the Everyday Foods Cookie Edition.  The cookies were good enough to almost forgive Martha for making me scour 3 grocery stores (and then pay money) for a magazine that I already receive as a subscription. This recipe is a definite hit.  I made the slight substitution of Guittard Choc-au-lait vanilla milk chips for chocolate chips and was pleased that we had all the ingredients in the house. We were so tempted by the aroma that we dug in without waiting for the cookies to cool.  Our dogs enjoyed this too because the cookies were still crumbly and they got the scraps.

Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Squares
Everyday Food Collectible Cookie Edition

Makes 24
Prep Time 30 min
Total Time 2 hr 30 min

  • 2 c. all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
  • 1 T. pumpkin pie spice (1 1/2 t cinnamon, 3/4 t ginger, 1/2 t nutmeg, 1/8 t allspice and cloves)
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 3/4 t salt
  • 2 sticks (16T) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 c sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 1 c pumpkin puree or any other squash if you prefer
  • 12 oz semisweet chocolate chips (I used a white chocolate with a hint of vanilla chip)

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang on all sides. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pie spice, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  2. With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth; beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in pumpkin purée (mixture may appear curdled). Reduce speed to low, and mix in dry ingredients until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
  3. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool completely in pan.
  4. Lift cake from pan (using foil as an aid). Peel off foil, and use a serrated knife to cut into 24 squares.

Recipe Follows


WDB: The storm of the century kept the dogs bored.

The dogs will tell you this has been a hard week. Rain up to Frankie's knees in the backyard. Little butt had issues with that and was very down cast. We went visiting that day since things were less than ideal for frolicking. While there, they made a pest of themselves and Frankie the dear was sick for the rest of the week. You can see her resting in her brother's bed below. She made quite a bit of work for me, but I can say that all her bedding and the living room carpet is really clean and smells like Febreze. Then more rain came and the wind blow so hard the intruder alerts were going off frequently. But today was beautiful. Fred looked longingly out the window this morning till I let him and Frankie outside to frolic. They had a blast since the storm of the century had been keeping them inside. They explored every new place and all the edges of the yard while I shopped for dog toys for Christmas.
Frankie annoyed that mommy sneaked up with a camera and woke her up.
Fred interested momentarily in what mommy is doing with the camera.
As you can see he was really more interested in the outside.

Recipe Follows


WHB: Get squashed with a secret

Tabblo: Squashed with a Secret

This week I was so absorbed by what was in my farm share on Monday that I almost totally forgot that this month I am sharing squash recipes.  Well, my creativity and my obsession got together this week in this recipe.

Today's meal simply needed a good side dish to move it into greatness.  I started cooking spareribs in my crock pot about noon.  Not sure what the side would be, I considered my options.  Then I lit on this new recipe I found just yesterday - bread pudding with Italian sausage.  This is a great recipe to make early and pull out of the refrigerator just before dinner.

Squash in this lovely bread pudding qualifies it for Weekend Herb Blogging!  This week it's hosted by Meeta at What's for Lunch Honey? It actually could be a meal in of itself.  It is savory and not at all sweet like typical squash recipes.  My squash-hating husband loved it.  So I guess score one for me and I can put it into my round of side/main dishes with squash.

My secret ingredient is Quince.  It is an old world fruit.  Some even believe that this is the forbidden fruit of Eden rather than an apple.  It is similar enough to the apple that they can be substitutes for each other in cooked recipes.  It has a heavenly scent that it spreads throughout your kitchen with a mixture between ripe pineapple, guava, vanilla and so much more.  Some even say this is the smell of love - leading to quinces tradition of love, marriage and fertility.  So far I am in love with it.

Storage: store one your counter so that your house can experience the glorious smell.  The rest should be placed in a plastic bag in the fridge.  They will store for several weeks.  Don't worry about bruising, it will not affect the fruit.  Peel the skin before use.  If the quince becomes soft, it has rotted or is about to rot.

Uses: Use in place of apples.  Create jams, preserves, marmalades because of its high pectin level.  The pectin level is so high that raw quinces do not taste good.

Flavor Enhancers: cheese, pork, port, orange, cinnamon, lamb

Health Notes:  High in vitamin C.  A syrup prepared from the fruit may be used as a great addition to drinks when sick.

butternut squash bread pudding with Italian sausage and roasted quince

Chef Todd Gray of Equinox – Washington D.C.
Adapted by StarChefs
Yield: 6 Servings

  • 6 cups Brioche bread cubes, 1 inch dice
  • 2 cups butternut squash purée
  • 2 cups Italian sausage, casing removed (I used turkey with Italian seasoning)
  • 2 quince, peeled, cored, and diced
  • 1 onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup Parmesan, grated
  • 2 teaspoons rosemary, minced
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350°F. In large mixing bowl combine bread cubes and squash purée, set aside. In large pan, cook sausage over medium heat until fat runs out. Add onion and cook 10 minutes. Add to bread squash mixture. Toss quince in olive oil and roast 30 minutes in oven. Remove and add to bread and sausage mixture. Let cool. When mixture has cooled add eggs, Parmesan, rosemary, cream and seasoning. Mix well to combine. Pour into buttered baking dish(at this point I refrigerated it for about 4 hours) and bake about 45 minutes - 1 hour. Remove and sprinkle with additional Parmesan. Serve warm.

Recipe Follows


Lemon Cream Salmon with whiffs of Quince

Tabblo: Salmon with Caprice

My senses are in a tizzy.  I just got my first winter farm share.  Saturday I got an email from my farmer Susie about Quinces.  I once had grocery store quinces in Saudi Arabia as a young teen, but never ones this fresh.  I'm so excited that I can't wait to share with ya'll what I make.  Just having them in our house makes the kitchen smell wonderful.  I don't like perfume, but if you could bottle this up I would wear it without question.  Susie is going to bring over 30 lbs for me to process for her.  I get to keep a portion of what I make and the rest heads back to her to be sent out with the farm shares.  That's the great benefit of knowing my farmer.  Currently I am contemplating Quince Preserve and Quince Empanadas.  In addition to the Quinces, I got salad greens after two weeks of nothing as Susie was on vacation.  She definitely deserves it after all the hard summer work. 

Tonight's dinner reinforces my idea that I should get a rice cooker.  My husband scorns my rice sometimes and wonders aloud why I can't cook rice.  The salmon entree I planned for Sunday got postponed until tonight in order to reduce the leftovers that were starting to pile up.  I started prepping for dinner right after picking up my farm share.  The salmon smelled so good when David came home and the rice was bubbling along nicely. Needless to say, I burned it.  This was a different twist from my usual rice blunders - it often turns out crunchy or soggy.  Well, I guess I'll keep trying.

With the rice out of the question, I scrambled to make an alternate plan.  I grabbed the salad greens from the farm share to make a lovely bed for the salmon.  With our dinner salad sabotaged, I now needed a salad.  Aha! I could make a caprice salad with tomatoes, avocados and Mt Tam Cowgirl cheese.  A great save.

Some of you might wonder why I rarely include main dishes in my postings.  The reason is that I have a membership to Saving Dinner, a website that sends out weekly menus.  This really frees me up to make creative side dishes from our lovely veggies from CSA.   Saving Dinner provides a menu and side suggestions (which I ignore or follow depending on my mood) and a shopping list so that a busy mom can save time at the store.  I really like the simple and quick meals.  There are 7 menus including variations for the southern hemisphere (due to seasonal differences) as well as kosher options for those who follow that tradition.  The kosher options were helpful to me when my husband had doctor's orders to avoid beef and dairy products.  I get 5-6 recipes each week which allows for a meal out or making a family favorite.

The menu I receive is called Body Clutter.  It is for people who are struggling to keep there weight down or to teach themselves healthy eating habits.  I don't have a weight problem, but since I find eating alone to be miserable, I don't remember to eat unless its a meal that I make for my husband.  The BC menu has breakfast, lunch and snack ideas and it's been helpful for me to finally learn what kind of things are really nutritious for breakfast.  I need protein at the beginning of the day but I really crave pancakes, waffles and French Toast.   Adding natural peanut butter helps control my cravings.

Anyway, the Salmon recipe that I cooked today came from the BC menu.  By permission I have included it for ya'll to try.  They have tasty sample menus for anyone to try for free.  They also have a Mega Menu mailer which is a response to the Dinner Franchises that help you prepare meals to put in the freezer at a super high price.  The mega menu mailer sounds like a great idea for a new mom or someone laid up after surgery since it is so simple and cheap.

Skillet Salmon with Lemon Cream

copyright Leanne Ely www.savingdinner.com
Serves 4
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 4 salmon fillets
  • 1/2 t basil
  • 1/2 t garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Season fish on both sides with basil, garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste.  Sauté fish for 5 minutes on each side, or till nicely browned and fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.  Serve with a dollop of Lemon Cream on top.

Lemon Cream (mix all ingredients together in a small bowl)
  • 1/2 c low fat sour cream
  • 1 T low fat mayonnaise
  • 1 t lemon juice
  • 1 t honey

Serving suggestions: Low carb - grilled asparagus and a big green salad.  Regular - add wild rice pilaf.

The only changes I really made were to sear all four sides of the salmon instead of just top and bottom and to place it on a bed of mixed greens.

Recipe Follows


WHB: Easy Ways to incorporate squash into your daily meals

Tabblo: WHB: Fries and Biscuits

Last week, I shared with ya'll all basic preparation and uses of squash.  Since squash has more nutrition in it than potatoes or basic bread I want to shares some recipes that substitute squash in ways that are both tasty and healthier for you.  These recipes are an excellent way to introduce kids (or adult skeptics) to squash in an enjoyable way. There are most likely some other seasonal treats over at Kayln's Kitchen for Weekend Herb Blogging that might entice some veggie haters to try something.

The first recipe is a substitute for French fries.  Personally, I can't wait when our regional fast food chain gets pumping out sweet potato fries and pumpkin shakes.  Burgerville is priced above the average fast food, so I only go there for this seasonal treat. Remodeling the house and buying into the CSA farm share made the budget a bit tighter this year and, by making my own squash fries and pumpkin milkshakes at home, I staved off the cravings a bit.  Adding a hamburger makes this an all-American fall dinner. Oh so good and tasty!

Winter Squash Fries

  • 1 squash of your choice - Butternut or delicate make for easier fry shaping (medium will serve 2-3 people)
  • Olive oil
  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • salt and pepper

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F.  Cut, deseed, peel and cut the squash into 1/2 inch sticks.
  2. On a baking sheet without any nonstick, just your good old metal version; toss together the cumin, salt, and pepper with enough oil to coat the fries.  If they are not well coated they may burn and cook less evenly.  Spread  into a single layer.
  3. Roast till fork tender and a little floppy.  45 min to an hour.  Watch carefully.  If you cut these uneven, you may need to remove the fries that finish before the others.
  4. You can enhance the flavors with cilantro and/or lime juice.

What else would this southern girl want?  Another favorite - Squash biscuits!  If you didn't know that I was from the south, don't worry.  My husband has a tough time keeping track as well. I have lived many places and I'm pleased to call the Northwest home now.  Some Southern comfort food goes a long way, however, in helping me stick out the rainy season.  Squash always brightens up a dull day and when you serve something as yummy as country fried chicken with cheesy mash potatoes.  These orange biscuits will match the décor and please some picky eaters.  Since I can't seem to find a biscuit cutter that I really like, I make these cute 1-inch biscuit dots.

Squash Biscuits

  • 1 3/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 2 T light-brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 6 T chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 c chilled squash puree (see recipe)
  • 1/3 c buttermilk or 1 t of white vinegar and milk to fill the 1/3 c

1. In large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.  With a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal, with some pea size lumps of butter remaining.  In a small bowl, whisk together squash and buttermilk; stir quickly into flour until just combined.
2. Knead dough on a lightly floured board or surface until dough just comes together but is still lumpy.  Shape into a disk about 1 inch thick.  With a floured biscuit cutter, cut out biscuits as close together as possible.  Gather scraps and repeat.  The dough does not hold together after the first repeat.  You can squash (pun intended) the remainder into a biscuit lump for an extra ugly duckling.
3. Preheat oven to 425 F with rack on lower shelf.  Butter a cake pan.  Place the biscuits snugly into the pan or they will become deformed during cooking.  Optional - brush melted butter on the tops.  Bake until golden about 20-24 minutes.
4. Serve with butter and eat heartily!

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