Winter Squash Recipes

This is the first of a series of winter squash recipes that will be unfolding through the fall and winter of 2013/14, as we invent them. You can generally use any sweet, ripe winter squash (including pumpkins) in the recipe below. There will be more recipes soon, because we have about 150 pounds of "Sweet Meat Oregon Homestead" squashes in the basement that we grew this year. (Thanks to Carol Deppe, for revitalizing this long-lost favorite)

Tito's Winter Squash Stew

I am so blessed to live with Tito, who is one of those chefs who cooks more by aroma than anything else. He never measures anything but creates the most delectable dishes based on what was just harvested or freshly caught. Our "Sweet Meat Oregon Homestead" winter squashes weigh in at about 15-20 pounds, and he has been making this incredibly delicious stew out of them. I had to follow him around to write down the recipe. He puts “about yay much” oregano in his hand (which I then make him pour in a measuring spoon so I can tell you how much), etc. Here’s the recipe:

  • ½ lb grass-fed ground beef or bison
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 med onions, diced
  • 3 huge cloves garlic, diced or minced

Saute on medium heat while adding the following one at a time and stirring around:

  • 4-5 c sweet ripe winter squash 
  • 1 med-large red bell pepper
  • 5-6 crimini mushrooms

Saute about another 1-2 minutes then add:

  • 1 large can diced tomatoes (or an equal amount of peeled fresh toms)
  • beef broth or water to just cover the vegetables
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 3/4 Tbsp salt
  • ½ Tbsp pepper
  • 1 Tbsp oregano
  • ½ tsp cumin ground
  • ½ tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 2-3 bay leaves

Reduce heat and simmer on low until veggies are tender and flavors are mingling, then add: 

  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
  • 1 ½ cups fresh or frozen corn
  • 2-3 big Swiss chard leaves (from the garden, or 5-6 of the “regular” sized ones from the store), diced

Simmer until all veggies are cooked. Takes about an hour, start to finish.


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