Tis the season for an abundance of winter produce! Winter Squash to be precise. Most people think of pumpkin pie and stop there when trying to figure
out what to do with these prolific growers that usually just make great
fall decorations.If you're a gardener, you'll also be delighted to know there are more uses for this winter crop than pie!
Most folks will just pass up this seaonal bargain food because they believe it is too difficult to work with or they really don't know the wide variety of things that can be done with winter squash. At bargain prices between $.39 to $.79 cents per pound, ounce per ounce
this delectable winter veggie can stretch in to any menu for pennies.
There's also a reason for this food to be in season in the winter. The nutritional content of winter squash is vital to our winter health. With loads of fiber ( 1 cup winter squash contains 5 grams of fiber) and the deep rich color (1 cup containing 150% of your RDA of vitamin A) it is also a good source of vitamin C, potassium and mangenese, folate, omega 3 fatty acids, copper, vitamins B5 and B6, niacin and thiamin. Each of these vitamins (and the tandum synergistic combination) help to combat the winter blahs, lack of sunshine, loss of energy that can be associated with cold weather and help bolster our immune system to combat cold weather ailments such as the flu. The benefit of getting them in the REAL FOOD of winter squash vs. a pill is that your body really does know how to use those nutrients when consumed as a food.
So here are a few ideas to stretch this frugal and healthy seasonal jewel:
- Add to muffins
- Add to mac & cheese
- Make into creamy soups
- Try as a side dishe with brown sugar and cinnamon
- Try roasted, grilled and mashed
The variety is practically endless.
If you would like recipes for these suggestions and video tips on just how easy using this bargain stretching veggie can be, be sure to sign up for our newsletter before October 31st (when the recipes go out!) at http://www.eatgrains.com (don't forget to click the confirmation email you'll receive or you won't get the newsletter in time). If you sign up in time you'll be loaded up with some out of the box winter squash ideas that stretch your food budget and redefine some 'comfort food' recipes!
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For even more stretching ideas, listen to "Encouragement in the Kitchen" at 5:00PM Eastern Mondays - Thursdays (or even catch up later at the same link when you have the time). We will be talking about the great upcoming recipes and tips today - 10/25/11
Until next time - keep stretching your dollars and learning new skills!
Best Blessings and enJOY the journey!