Category Archives: Squash

Better Than Starbucks Pumpkin Scones

I have a guest post this week written by a friend’s ultra cool daughter, A.    Love all the local ingredients sourced at UW farmer’s market as well.

pumpkin-scones

At 6:00 am, my taste buds are usually too sleepy to even taste my breakfast. Nor do they want to. Spelt pancakes washed down by a kefir shake? Good thing I’m not awake.

However, one morning, my mother pleasantly surprised me! On the table was a gorgeous pumpkin scone, and when I ate it, I woke up. Delicious! And it tasted exactly like the Starbucks pumpkin scones… hmm. Was my mother trying to sneak away store-bought as homemade, breaking with the local diet? Apparently not, because when I finally saw the recipe, it looked decidedly healthy. Good thing they don’t taste that way!

scone-ingredients

Better than Starbucks Pumpkin Scones

• 2 cups spelt flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
• 5 T Rapadura sugar
• 2 t baking powder
• 1/2 t salt
• 1/2 t ground cinnamon
• 1/2 t ground nutmeg
• 1/4 t ground cloves
• 1/4 t ground ginger
• 6 T cold butter
• 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
• 3 T cream
• 1 large egg

Optional Glaze:
Combine ½ cup powdered sugar with about ½ T milk, adding milk slowly until you reach your favored consistency. Spread over scones. If you’d like, you can add some spice into the glaze with some cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and spices in a large bowl. Cut butter in large chunks and mix with a fork into the dry ingredients until the mixture is crumbly and no large chunks of butter remain.

Combine the rest of the ingredients in another bowl, beating until well combined. Fold wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, being sure not to overmix.

Put dough onto baking sheet and form into large circle. Cut into 6 wedges and separate them.

Bake scones for 15 minutes at 425.

Let cool, then frost with optional glaze. Enjoy!

alexandra1

Thanks A!

Savory Squash Gratin

squash-gratin

We grew an amazing number of acorn squash this summer from Rents Due starts purchased at PCC. The tag said prolific but I had no idea just what that meant.

se-acorn-squash

Here we are almost December still with several boxes of squash in the garage. Faced with no sweet potatoes for Thanksgiving dinner I made up a savory side dish that would hold up it’s own sharing a plate with our smoked turkey.

Savory Roast Acorn Squash Gratin

Roast 4 acorn squash by slicing them in half, scooping out the seeds, rubbing the cut surfaces with olive oil and roasting them in a 350 degree oven until soft when poked with a fork.

Scoop out the soft flesh and whizz it in the food processor until smooth.  Add 2 tablespoons of melted butter, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary and 1/4 cup of sharp Samish Bay Montasio cheese. The amount of salt you use will depend on how salty your cheese is. If you are using parmesan you will need less.

Place the squash mixture in a small pyrex dish, dot the surface with butter and bake in a 350 degree oven until warm and the top begins to brown around the edges. The length of time will depend greatly on how many other things you have in your oven.

Squash Muffins

Chicken Little attends Laurelhurst Elementary and they had an ubercool program this week where the kids attend 3 presentations on health and nutrition. There were some very talented presenters and somehow I managed to wrangle my way in.

My presentation was on how to ditch the store and grow your own groceries. I had a slideshow (actually the one in the sidebar you see on this site) with a handout, my composting worms, my uber cool neighbor Tiffany who has children at Laurelhurst as well and one of Tiffany’s chickens.

tiffany-laurelhurst

Here you see Tiffany cheerfully demonstrating an egg and explaining how important protein is to a growing child. In the foreground you can see Chubby happily eating some scratch on the sheet.

The night before I turned this small amount of ingredients:

squash-muffin-ingredients

Into 100 squash muffins from our home-grown butternut squash. Instead of the frosting Jamie Oliver calls for in the above linked recipe I opted to simply sprinkle a little powdered sugar over them. Much quicker for me and healthier for the kids. They sort of reminded me of snow on squash that way.

squash-muffins

I substituted Lentz spelt for the wheat, decreased the amount of sugar and used my squash and eggs which made those 100 muffins cost about $7, mostly because I used sunflower oil. Normally I only bake with butter and coconut oil but butter is pretty spendy and nut allergies are through the roof with kids so I chose to leave out the wheat, dairy & coconut.

I was glad I did because one little girl sitting next to the muffins had a wistful look on her face. In fact the only thing I could think of the whole time was how much she looked just like Anne Frank. I finally asked her if she wanted a muffin and she told me she couldn’t have dairy. Her face lit up the room when I told her they were dairy free. That made the whole thing worth-while for me right there.

Not only were these muffins made with love but they were a pretty dang healthy treat with freshly ground whole spelt and/or emmer (I was testing but the spelt ones were lighter with a loftier crumb), pastured eggs and squash. The mom volunteers and most of the kids gave them the thumbs up.

As Jamie would say “why don’t you give them a go?”

Squash Muffins
Based on a recipe by Jamie Oliver

14 ounces winter squash, skinned, seeded, chopped then “whizzed” in the food processer until fine
2 cups brown sugar
4 large eggs
3/4 cup melted butter, coconut oil or sunflower oil
2 1/2 cups spelt or whole wheat pastry flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
dash cloves or allspice
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease muffin tins well or line with paper liners.

Mix the squash, sugar, eggs, and oil together. In a separate bowl combine the flour, powder, spices and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, gently mixing until just combined. Don’t over mix or the muffins will toughen up.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until they test clean and let them cool on a wire rack. Once they are cooled you can shake some powdered sugar over the top. I’m sure cream cheese frosting would be great with them as well.