Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Make This Now.

I spent much of this past Saturday putting in my winter garden at the farm.  A couple modest rows of spinach, kale, chard, beets and carrots should (*fingers crossed*) keep me happy for the next few months... though I'll have to wait until summer to reap the rewards of my garlic.  Thank goodness for scapes.

Before I left the farm, I loaded up the car with a box full of my most valuable farm harvest this year: butternut squash.  This was the first time I've ever tried growing these, and surprisingly, about eight or 10 plants yielded something like 50 butternuts -- apparently these hearty gourds like the miserable heat and drought-like conditions of our past summer season.  Bonus!

If you know me, then you know that butternuts are the key to my starchy, golden-orange heart, so this is a rich harvest indeed.  I'm the queen of butternut soup, I know my way around butternut pasta and risotto, and I've perfected my roasting technique, so this weekend I tried something different.  And it was so darn good, I just have to share it with you.

Sauteed Beluga Lentils & Butternut Squash:

The squash is seasoned, roasted, and then tossed with lentils, herbs, and a light dressing, and wow -- it's great.  The lentils provide a bit of texture, the Dijon mustard and the vinegar add a little zing, and the squash is, well, you know how I feel about squash.  Thank you, Sprouted Kitchen, for this lovely (and easy) addition to my repertoire.

I implore all of you who share the butternut obsession to make this recipe as soon as you can.  Our warehouse is packed with fresh, locally grown butternut squash, so I know you can find them now at many of our independent grocers and markets.  Then, after you've feasted, come back here and tell me how you liked it.

A few notes.  Beluga lentils do not exist within Charlottesville City limits -- or, at least, I couldn't find them (let me know if you do!).  I substituted French lentils and it was still delicious.  I also skipped the basil, doubled the parsley, and subbed white wine vinegar for the apple cider vinegar. 

image credit: Sprouted Kitchen

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