Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Butternut Squash

I know this is May, and it is spring (although here in the NW it is not being very spring-like!)  But I have had a butternut squash sitting on top of my fridge for at least a month now, waiting for me to use it.  Butternut squash is something new to me- I don't think we ever ate it growing up.

I was trying out some recipes from the Traditional Foods Menu Mailer and one of them is Veggie-Heavy Chili, which includes half of a butternut squash.  I was actually surprised when my family liked this recipe!  (We are not ones to be fans of "different" ways of using food- like sweet potatoes in burritos for example.)  So, then the question is, what to do with the other half of the squash?  The menu mailer suggests squash oven fries, but I tried it & that falls under the not fans of "different" ways of using food category.  Instead, I felt like having some squash pancakes for breakfast.

And now here is some exciting news for me- I tried & successfully adapted a recipe to "soaking" for the first time!  I have preferred to let others test & try converting recipes before this, but I got brave & it worked!  (I think pancakes are probably a pretty safe bet for converting to soaking.)  I found this pumpkin pancake recipe and modified a few things.  The pancakes were great & even my 6 year old liked them!

First I took my peeled & cut up butternut squash, put it in a covered pan on the stove with a little bit of water & about a tablespoon of coconut oil. I boiled the water to steam the squash for several minutes (until very soft), then drained the remaining water & pureed the squash in the blender.  This makes 2 c. of puree, set aside 1 c. for another recipe (like muffins).

Squash (or Pumpkin) Pancakes
2 c. flour
1 1/2 c. buttermilk
*12-24 hours beforehand, combine these two ingredients & cover

1 c. squash or pumpkin puree
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ginger
1/8 t. nutmeg
2 T. raw sugar, honey, or maple syrup
2 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1 egg
2 T. melted coconut oil

When you're ready to make the pancakes stir in all remaining ingredients to the soaked flour/buttermilk mixture.  Our family likes thin pancakes (not fluffy) so I added about 1/2 c. water and 1/2 c. milk to greatly thin out this batter.  Heat additional coconut oil in a skillet over medium low heat (you want these to cook all the way through) flipping when bubbles pop.

Serve with maple syrup or Pear Sauce.  This makes a lot, so freeze the extras for quick breakfasts on other days (just pop them in the toaster).

With the other 1 c. of squash puree I decided to try Kitchen Stewardship's Pumpkin Muffin recipe.  I modifed the amount of sugar & the spices a little bit.  First, 24 hours beforehand I combined:
1 2/3 cup white whole wheat flour
1 c. pureed squash
3/4 c. water + 2 Tbs plain yogurt
1/2 c. melted butter

The next day I added:
1/2 c. sugar (original recipe called for 1 c. but that is more than I like for muffins)
2 eggs
1/4 t. baking powder
1 1/2 t. baking soda
3/4 t. salt
1/8 t. ground cloves (original recipe calls for 1/2 t.)
1 t. cinnamon (original recipe calls for 1/2 t.)
1/4 t. nutmeg (original recipe calls for 1/2 t.)
I also sprinkled additional cinnamon sugar on top of the muffins.

I baked them at 325 for 45 minutes.  Makes about 16 muffins (filling cups very full).  They taste great, but they did fall in the middle.  I think it might have something to do with reducing the sugar in the recipe. 

Still worth a try though- these are getting gobbled up in my house!


This post is a part of Real Food Wednesday
and Pennywise Platter Thursday.


  1. thanks for something different
    I look forward to trying the pancakes.
    God bless.

  2. Hmm. Squash pancakes. That's a great idea. I do pumpkin muffins sometimes, but I hadn't thought of substituting the butternut squash sitting on my counter. I bought it thinking I'd do something new with it. And every day it glares at me and says "oh yeah?! like what?!" And now I know!

  3. @green mom- they are yummy :)
    @maggie- LOL, I know- I had that squash glaring down at me from the fridge for quite some time- the other thing I just thought of would be to freeze the puree in a ice cube tray & add a few cubes to smoothies (would add a creamy texture & bright color) would work good with mango or strawberry smoothies I think!

  4. I am eager to try the muffin recipe - AND I love the jar you have the muffins in! Where did you get it... :)

  5. @ReaderWoman- thanks! You know, I think that might have been a wedding present oh so long ago :) But I googled glass cookie jar & it looks like they've got the same one on Amazon & Bed Bath and Beyond http://www.amazon.com/Anchor-Hocking-1-Gallon-Heritage-Glass/dp/B0000DDVN7

  6. Thanks for sharing your recipes.

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