Beyond Butternut: Glorious Adventures in Squash and Soup
Sometimes you don’t have to go very far to live an adventure in food. As a kid growing up in Scituate, Massachusetts (on the east coast of the USA, in New England), my Mom would have my brother and me help her plant and tend squash in our vegetable garden.
We would stand by and watch as old Humph Turner would come by and rototill the soil, then clumsily trace out rows with hoes that were taller than we were. It was hard for us to get the spacing of the seeds as even as Mom would have liked, and she smiled at us as we struggled to cover them with just the right amount of dirt.
The biggest adventure of our vegetable garden was waiting for the seeds to sprout. Every day we would run out to see if there were any light green leaves poking their heads through the soil. We would pull any weeds between the rows and gently pat the mounds. You should have seen us try to lift the galvanized steel watering can! Then on the day the little seedlings finally decided to rear their heads through the lovingly tended soil, our faces would light up in amazement and wonder at the adventure of life. Any excess harvest in our innocent childhood days in New England would be placed on a table at the end of the driveway with a hand-lettered sign, inviting neighbors and passers-by to leave 5 or 10 cents in an honesty box in return for the fruits of our loving labours. I don’t know that I would dare to do that these days…
Now that I have my own vegetable garden, I seem to specialize in squash. I saved the seeds from a spaghetti squash, a butternut and a Hubbard squash and, after reliving the adventure of planting and the wonder of germination, I carefully planted out a whopping 24 vines into my tilled and tended vegetable patch. I watched in anticipation over the spring and summer as they grew and grew. My harvest was the biggest adventure of my life: 39 spaghetti squash, 41 Hubbards and 5 glorious butternut squash. Much better than we ever harvested back in New England!
Then came the adventure of preserving. Whatever do you do with all that squash? Many of them have been cut and frozen in anticipation of roasting, and the best ones are being transformed into soup. One of my favourite soups of all time is butternut soup, which I make in my trusty Thermomix with a hint of curry powder, just enough to enhance the naturally buttery flavours in this lovely legume. The good people at GLORIOUS! Soups make a New England Butternut Squash soup to which they add a hint of cumin for another adventure in food.
So there you have it, my very own adventure in food takes place right in my own backyard 😉
This blog post is an entry into the Foodies100/GLORIOUS! soup #GloriousAdventures blogger challenge.