This has not always been the case. In the past, any dish made with squash was to be avoided, lest the mushy mixture should make me gag.
With age comes many things, including a growing fondness for squash ... especially baked Acorn Squash with butter and brown sugar or raw Zucchini in salads.
Then, an intriguing recipe popped up on my radar, containing something new to me -- Butternut Squash -- that looks like this when you buy them:
Research revealed that the word "squash" comes from the Narragansett language (belonging to Native Americans living in Rhode Island long ago) and means "a green thing eaten raw."
In fact, squash was one of the "Three Sisters" planted by Native Americans: corn, beans and squash. Is it a fruit or a vegetable? Experts say it is both, since it's considered a vegetable when used in cooking, but because it has seeds it's technically a fruit.
The bottom line is the deep yellow/orange flesh of Butternut Squash tastes great in a recipe for "Tortellini with Butternut Squash" originally found in Real Simple and modified by swapping out the mushrooms for sweet Italian sausage.
The surprisingly tasty ingredient in this recipe is the squash, which is cut into chunks, seasoned with salt and pepper and sage, tossed in olive oil, and then baked on a cookie sheet quickly in a hot oven until it looks like this:
Check out the recipe HERE.
This dish will provide the entree for another Birthday Dinner at my house next weekend, served with a shrimp, avocado and fennel salad ... and topped off with a luscious Limoncello Cake.
How do you like your squash?