VeganMoFo: Winter Squash

22 Oct

One of my favorite parts of Fall is the return of winter squash!  Winter squashes include pumpkin, butternut, acorn, spaghetti squash, delicata, kabocha, and lots of other types.  They are an excellent source of vitamin A, and a good source of vitamin C, potassium, fiber, manganese, and other vitamins and minerals.

(I have a mini winter squash habit.  Every year I have to buy at least one of every mini winter squash I see to put around the living room.  I can’t help it, they’re so cute!  Although, these winged gourds kind of weird Dave out, so I’ve been abstaining from those this year.)

I don’t think I need to tell you how to enjoy pumpkin, probably the most popular winter squash.  There are literally millions of vegan pumpkin recipes online, both sweet and savory.  Angela at Oh She Glows has a bunch of great looking pumpkin recipes listed too.  One of my favorite ways I prepared pumpkin last year was to peel it, cut it into cubes them roast it with a bit of coconut oil and spices.  It made a fantastic side dish.  Canned pumpkin is fine if you don’t want to bother hacking away at a whole squash.  I would recommend organic if possible, and be sure to get plain pureed pumpkin, not pumpkin pie mix.

Butternut squash is another squash which needs to be peeled before eating, and you can treat it almost exactly the same as pumpkin.  This Roasted Garlic, Butternut Squash and Carrot Soup with Caramelized Onions is really tasty.  I included baby carrots only because that’s what I had in the fridge at the time; regular carrots would be fine.  I’ve got my eye on this Butternut Mac ‘n Cheese too.

Speaking of pumpkins and butternuts, don’t throw out those seeds!  Pumpkin seeds are a good source of a bunch of minerals including phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, zinc, iron and copper, as well as protein and vitamin K.  To roast pumpkin or butternut seeds, toss them with a little bit of oil or melted vegan butter and the spices of your choice (include some salt), and roast at 300 F for up to 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

I’m running short on time today, sadly, so I can’t delve too far into other squashes, but I’ll mention that some squashes don’t require peeling, such as acorn and delicata.  Bake them halved or cut into pieces, and you can eat the skin if you want.  Also, spaghetti squashes are a whole different animal.  Here’s a nice picture tutorial on how to cook spaghetti squash, if you’re curious.

Sources:
Wikipedia – Winter Squash
WH Foods – Pumpkin Seeds

Thursday, 10/20/11

breakfast – 1 1/2 buttermilk-date bran muffins, banana
AM snack – pear, coffee with soy creamer
lunch – celeriac & caramelized onion soup, toasted Daiya cheddar sandwich on multigrain oat bread
PM snack – 1/4 cashew, almond and cranberry trek mix
dinner (at Whole Foods) – three bean salad, quinoa with beets, baked tofu, red cabbage and red wine vinegar, sesame kale, collards with tempeh bacon
after dinner – 6 oz red wine

exercise – 30 minutes walking

daily points used:  29
weekly points used:  7
activity points earned:  2

Friday, 10/21/11

breakfast – toasted Daiya cheddar sandwich on multigrain oat bread, orange
AM snack – banana, coffee with soy creamer
lunch – hummus and pita with artichoke hearts and roasted red peppers, applesauce
dinner – footlong Subway veggie sandwich on white with mustard and avocado
second (late night) dinner – rice & bean “little burrito” (which turned out to be not so little), 10 tortilla chips with pico de gallo, 24 oz light beer

daily points used:  29
weekly points used:  23

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One Response to “VeganMoFo: Winter Squash”

  1. CraftyEarthMama October 22, 2011 at 1:22 pm #

    I totally share your love for winter squash! It’s like everytime I’m in the store I wanna take one home with me. They are all so different and cute. I just keep asking myself what I’m going to do with all this squash. DD likes them too, especially the bumpy ones :)

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