Monday, October 4, 2010

Happy, Happy, Happy!

I brought these two Red Kuri squash in last week to use as decoration. The big one weighs 6-1/2 pounds and the smaller weighs 3-1/2 pounds. Most of the squash out in the garden are close to or somewhere between these weights.

Yesterday I finally got up enough courage to bring another one in and cut it open to see if it had matured enough to be edible. I had just about convinced myself the squash weren't going to make it. But they DID, oh ye of little faith, Mama Pea!

I split it in half and . . . wow, it looked good! So I baked it to eat with our evening meal. Wow again. It was very, very good!

I am so happy that the hundred pounds of squash out there in the garden have ripened enough to be usable. (A hundred pounds?! If, on the the average, each squash weighs 5 pounds, and there are at least 25 of them . . . well, that makes a little more than 100 pounds, right?)

So what the heck am I going to DO with 100+ pounds of squash? I'm going to give away as many as I can before people start running in the opposite direction when they see me. I've been thinking I'd also like to cook and freeze some to use in recipes where I'd normally use pumpkin. But just how would the squash be as a pumpkin substitute?

I had 2 cups of cooked squash left from the one we ate yesterday. So today I made a pumpkin pie with the squash leftovers.

This is the pie ready to go into the oven. Umm, looks a little light in color, doesn't it?

Just out of the oven and looking a little darker . . . but also like it wants to essplode! What's with this?

As the pie cooled, it began to look more like a pumpkin pie.

We sampled it for dessert tonight. The texture was not quite as smooth as pumpkin (I'm not sure why) and although the flavor was a smidge different than pumpkin, it was actually very tasty and I wonder if a person would be able to detect the difference between this squash pie and one made with pumpkin.

Bottom line, I've decided I will put up a quantity of the squash to use in place of canned pumpkin this winter.

And I am so, so happy the Red Kuris will be used for food rather than as funny-shaped pumpkin decorations!


Susan said...

That pie looks oh-so-yummy!
Do you ever make squash soup? One of our favorite autumn suppers--we usually make with a chicken broth and often add apple and/or orange, fresh ginger, carrot--sometimes ground toasted almonds.

The Apple Pie Gal said...

Well, that is when I would just add more cinnamon and tell them "Eat it or wear it!"

Ok, you can use your Pumpkin Pie Spice!

mtnchild said...

That pie looks wonderful, I'd be willing to try it, even though I'm a Pumpkin Pie girl! Glad they will be usable.

Jennifer Jo said...

My kids don't ask for "pumpkin pie"---they ask for "squash pie" (though I often call it "pumpkin pie"). It's their favorite. (

Butternut squashes make the best pies, I believe...

Anonymous said...

Looks fabulous (this coming from a non-squash person)! :) Maybe if you ran the squash through a food processor or blender to make is smoother? Congrats!

Kelly said...

That sure is a lot of squash, your pie looks amazing, a winter's store of pie squash sounds like a good plan!

Erin said...

You definitely need to use a few as decorations, they are beautiful! So could you use it as a pumpkin bread substitute as well? Looks good!

Jane @ Hard Work Homestead said...

Looks good to me. Maybe as they age a bit the starch molecules will break down a bit and make a smoother product. And who could complain about a pie?

Unknown said...

I have used kushaw in place of pumpkin and really like it. It doesn't have as strong of a flavor as pumpkin does. In fact, everyone in my family would rather have kushaw than pumpkin. I just use the pumpkin recipie and it cooks up great.

Susan said...

Those are beautiful squash(es)! I might have a go at them next year. As for that pie - save me a piece, I'll be right over!

Mama Pea said...

Susan - Have not tried squash soup but with the bounty this year, I may just do that Thanks.

Apple Pie Gal - Oh, you are such a haaarrd woman! ;o)

Yvette - Yeah, I LOVE pumpkin also, but didn't grow nary a one this year. Next year. (How many times do we gardeners say that?)

JJ - Pumpkin pie has always been my daughter's favorite, too. I'd like her to taste this first attempt of mine at using squash and get her opinion.

Copied your recipe (thanks for the link) for squash pie and will give it a try.

Stephanie - I DID run the squash though the blender. Hrumpf. Methinks perhaps I should/could have cooked it a little longer to break down the composition.

Kelly - Yep, I was amazed at all of them. The description on the Red Kuri seed packet said to expect 2-3 fruits from each plant but I sure got a lot more from my 5 plants.

Erin - I plan on using it in any recipe I would normally use pumpkin. Hoping it will work in all recipes.

jane - Good thought. I'm hoping the squash will "mellow" a little in storage.

cindy - I've never heard of kushaw! What is it??

Susan - Hubby ate a piece at breakfast time and said it was better than yesterday. How encouraging is that??

Your piece is saved. ;o)

Claire said...

Looking for a home for some squash, you say? Hmmm, we'll be up the weekend starting Thurs, 10/21! Speaking of which, we should make a time to come show off the kiddies to you!

Mama Pea said...

Claire - We'll be lookin' for ya!!

Jenyfer Matthews said...

That pie is perhaps the only way I might be tempted to eat squash :) And I don't see why it wouldn't work to use pureed squash in place of pumpkin in bread, soup, etc. What is a pumpkin anyway but a giant gourd?

Mama Pea said...

Jen - You're so right . . . pumpkin, squash . . . they're certainly closely related!

I think all of you that say you don't like squash must have had a very bad experience when you were little. ;o) Baked squash with lots of butter and salt and pepper? M-m-m-m!

Jenyfer Matthews said...

I think my childhood memories of squash are so terrible that I've blocked most of them out ;)