Butternut Squash - puree

HUGE Thank you to our neighbor who gave us a bucket full of these wonderful vegies at our city council meeting ... but hubby doesn't like squash - he can choke down Acorn squash, but butternut has never appealled to him (and Spaghetti squash has been 'forbidden')

so I have had this idea to use a 'Sweet Potato Pie" recipe but use butternut squash instead ... so the first thing I need to do is cook the squash - I felt the crock-pot would be perfect for this because the slow cooking should help to draw out the water/moisture within the squash which needs to be reduced in order to use it for the pie.

Alright let's start ....

my Crock-Pot Duo, with old crock pot
crock in one space
I like to work near the sink

1 cutting board
1 sharp knife
1 strong vegie peeler
1 spoon
1 crock-pot

First decide how you want to deal with the rinds -- I did not want to deal with the peel later so I used a strong vegie peeler and removed as much rind as possible from the 'neck' of the squash, leaving the bulbous end alone (those I will cook seperately)
- if you chose to remove the rind after it cooks, slice the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.

I sliced the bulbs open for this shot
instead of saving it for later
second, for those who kept the peel on, simply cut it into large peices so that it fits in your crock-pot - this will make it easier to hold as you scoop out the tender flesh later... for those who peeled first - slice the squash into as small of cubes as you feel comfortable doing.

Squash in Crock, heirloom table cloth from my mother

By making the peices small now, it will be easier later to puree & the squash will cook faster since the heat won't have to pass thru so much mass (I found that after 4hrs on low, it was fork tender)

Add 1/2 - 1 cup of water to the pot (I simply used a coffee cup) and turn it on ... I used 'low'.

Now This : I get to enjoy later ... maybe I will wedge them up and sprinkle them with just a bit of salt , cook on a rack over a shallow pan of water

don't worry about cracks in your
squash, simply slice it off once
cut open

 I did not add any flavorings at this point, so the resulting mash can be used in a variety of ways:
  • add brown sugar & spice for pumpkin substitute
  • add butter, salt/pepper for a side dish
  • leave plain to use for baby food
  • leave it chunkier and you could actually use it for canning (I suggest using high heat - pressure canning is necessary ... or so I've read)
  • leave plain for freezing for eating later in the winter
Don't let yourself be limited .... any thing that calls for pumpkin can also use butternut squash ... anything that calls for any squash can use butternut instead ...

just remember the difference in the tastes.
(this space reserved for Photos/post of puree)

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