Friday, June 24, 2011

Veggie Ventures: Butternut Squash

Welcome to the Veggie Ventures series, where we'll take a glimpse
at veggies my husband and I would like to grow but have never really eaten!

Butternut Squash. This was one I knew we'd both like, even though my only experience with it has been in this form:

I know.  Shameful, isn't it?  When I was trying out vegetarianism, this Lean Cuisine meal was a lunchtime mainstay.  So I knew that I at least have tried butternut squash; I just didn't know how it would taste on its own, sans "creamy sauce with walnuts, snap peas, and carrots."  (sidenote: I wasn't very good at being a vegetarian, so it didn't stick unfortunately.)  Butternut squash is pretty common and wildly popular, so it must be good, right?  Well I'm happy to report that once I tried freshly baked butternut squash without any adornment, I was in love.  Mr. K stands in agreement.  Sweet, smooth, and rich--this is one tasty vegetable!

Speaking of rich, I recently came across a wonderful recipe for Butternut Squash Ziti on Macheesmo.  I had to try it out because it gave me the perfect excuse to seek out one of my "I gotta try that sometime" cheeses:

(My other "must try one day" cheese is Fontina)

I've always read that you can swap out some Swiss cheese if Gruyere isn't available, so of course I've always done that when I came across a recipe calling for Gruyere.  Why?

$13.98 a pound, that's why.

While it's not the most budget-friendly cheese, I think it defintely has a place in the kitchen once in a while.  We both really enjoyed the flavor of the cheese by itself, despite my initial reservations.  Out of the package, I could detect a bit of aroma funkiness that I am especially sensitive to.  Once cooked, I could still smell le funk, but for some (lucky) reason I could not taste what I smelled.  Anyway, we both REALLY enjoyed the dish (see evidence below.  I made half the recipe, but we could have easily eaten a whole one).  It had a little kick to it from the cayenne, and even though the butternut squash was really sweet on its own, it worked out perfectly here.

Click HERE to visit Macheesmo and get the recipe!

Have you ever used a recipe as an excuse for buying fancy/pricey ingredients?

1 comment:

  1. Looks really yummy! I've developed more and more of a liking for these stronger cheeses as I've grown up.