Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Winter Storage

In the good ole' olden days, the majority of people had things called root cellars where they stored their root veggies (potatoes, squash, yams, onions, etc) to eat all winter. People also actually canned food and used that to eat in the winter. People in the North didn't go to the store and buy tomatoes, corn, peppers, or bananas during the cold season. They just ate what you could store.

Totally NOT my root cellar, just a pic of an awesome one!

To me, the idea of eating what you can store/grow yourself is obviously appealing. I am so glad I have a butt load of canned pickles, beans, tomatoes, salsa, peppers, beets, and jam. I love that in our garage (where there is no heater) my onions, potatoes, beans, squash, and garlic are just waiting for me to make dinners out of them.

Totally my storage veggies (grown by and photo taken by TBoy)

However, I could do a better job of integrating some of my stored foods into our daily meals. I am pretty good about it though as we have squash for supper (I like calling dinner that, makes me sound all farmy and shit) a lot, which is totally awesome. And we eat potatoes like a freakin' Irish peasant. My canned goods could use more integration though. T uses pickles and peppers daily in his sandwiches and I try to eat the beans and beets daily but really I should be eating them more. Lord knows we have a good amount to sustain ourselves so I should look more into some pickled beet recipes...if they exist.

I do have some amazing squash recipes though! I know I have posted them on here before but you know what, now you get with it and eat it. It is f-ing delicious.

Storage Squash Lasagna (now the squash doesn't have to be storage squash but I like the idea)
Serves 8 - 10
adapted from Giada's recipe
1T olive oil
1 (1 1/2 to 2-pound) butternut (delicata is also delicious!) squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2c water
1/4c butter
1/4c all-purpose flour
3c whole milk
1/2c veggie broth
Pinch nutmeg
3/4c basil leaves roughly chopped
12 no-boil lasagna noodles
2 1/2c grated mozzarella cheese
1/3c grated Parmesan

 To prepare sauce:
1. Heat the oil in a heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the squash and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. 
2. Pour the water into the skillet and then cover and simmer over medium heat until the squash is tender, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. 
3. Cool squash slightly and then transfer the squash to a food processor. Blend until smooth. Season the squash puree, to taste, with more salt and pepper.
4. Melt the butter in a heavy medium-size saucepan over medium heat. 
5. Add the flour and whisk for 1 minute. 
6. Gradually whisk in the milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. 
7. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly, whisking often, about 5 minutes. 
8. Whisk in the nutmeg. Cool slightly. 
9. Transfer half of the sauce to a blender (or food processor).
10. Add the basil and blend until smooth. 
11. Return the basil sauce to the sauce in the pan and stir to blend. Season the sauce with salt and pepper, to taste.

Putting it all together:
12. Position the rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.
13. Lightly butter a 13 by 9 by 2-inch glass baking dish
14. Spread 3/4 cup of the sauce over the prepared baking dish. 
15. Arrange 3 lasagna noodles on the bottom of the pan. 
16. Spread 1/3 of the squash puree over the noodles.
17. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese. 
18. Drizzle 1/2 cup of sauce over the noodles. 
19. Repeat layering 3 more times.
20. Tightly cover the baking dish with foil and bake the lasagna for 40 minutes. 
21. Take off foil and sprinkle the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses over the lasagna. 
22. Continue baking uncovered until the sauce bubbles and the top is golden, 15 minutes longer. Let the lasagna stand for 15 minutes before serving.


1 comment:

The Momma said...

Pa made squash lasagna recently. It was delicious! As was yours. Pa was offended when I said he used your recipe because of course he made it out of his own head. (thanks for givin' him the idea)