With an abundance of Tonda Padana winter squash – grown for its amazing taste and storage properties – Suz adapted a squash recipe found elsewhere. It went something like this:
- 1 cup tonda padana squash
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup Splenda (sweetener)
- 3 teaspoons white flour
- 2 eggs (kindly donated by Holly and Mistletoe)
- 1/4 cup baking margerine (Stork, but butter will do)
- 2 teaspoons lemon extract
- grated rind of one lemon
- pastry for the base (to suit)
- Pre-heat oven to 350C.
- Wash and peel the squash.
- Scoop out the seeds and save to bake separately for another dish.
- Cut the squash into manageable chunks
- Grate the squash with a coarse grater (a typical cheddar cheese grater is good)
- Mix all the ingredients (except the pastry!)
- Line a pie dish with the pastry – it’s only going to be the base.
- Fill the base with the squash mix.
- Bake for 45 minutes on the low rack, but in our fan-oven it only took 27 minutes.
That’s it! Suz baked a couple of them – they lasted two days (personally I’m surprised they lasted that long!), and the second was even better as the lemon had time to really soak into the squash.
On the subject of squash – we worked out, given the seed packet cost, how much it costs to make a meal per person. Suz concocted another gorgeous recipe – Baked Squash Soup – roughly speaking the ingredients are baked squash, baked garlic, fried onions, cayenne pepper, nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste. Oh, and some milk. This soup, with grated cheese on top, a couple of slices of bread and butter, gives you all you need and the soup contingent costs around 10p per person per meal. The squash, onion and garlic are all home-grown. So including the cheese and bread and electricity you’re probably looking at 40p maximum per person per meal. I’m saying this, not for the cost perspective, but for the fact that as a nation we have forgotten how to eat cheaply *and* well. I only wish local councils would help people who want to grow their own by encouraging allotments, teaching people, and we could all have a bash at that smug feeling to be had from chowing down on your own produce. Sometimes our priorities are so messed up. Sure, it takes a lot of time to grow and prepare the food from your own patch, but what else would we be doing? Watching the goggle box? Paying for gym membership, when all the exercise I could possibly wish for was at the end of a fork or spade?