Squash is arguably the quintessential autumnal vegetable, and is something that I have come to greatly appreciate over my 19 years of continuous eating. Squash is versatile, tasty, and cheap when it’s in season: three of my favorite things. Squash, the active non-edible kind (aka the sport), is also the only Division 1 sport that we have here at Tufts (ignore the fact that nationwide, there is only Division 1 squash). So, bottom line, squash is very important. Here are some of my favorite preparations of squash that I highly recommend trying if you’re looking to add some spice to your daily routine.
We have all heard of roasted butternut squash, and if you haven’t, I am truly sorry. Not to fear, however, since it’s extremely easy to make. All you need is some salt, pepper and olive oil, and you’re on your way towards one success of a night. Top that roasted butternut squash with some reduced balsamic vinegar, and you have unlocked the key to my heart.
Contrary to what many people may believe, zucchini is a type of squash — I know, mind-blowing right? — and is the perfect vessel for grilling. Cut that zucchini into slices length-wide, lather it in some olive oil, and coat it with whatever seasonings you like, and your prep work is done. Throw that zucchini on an outdoor, or even better indoor grill for 2-3 minutes on each side and enjoy eating the whole platter (because, trust me, you will) What’s great about grilled zucchini is that it’s even better cold the next day by itself, on a salad, or my favorite, in a sandwich.
Now I know this may sound a little strange to “scoop out” a squash, but some forms of squash have pretty delicious insides. Spaghetti squash is an oblong yellow squash that can be scooped out after it is roasted whole to make “spaghetti” out of the interior. The inside of the spaghetti squash, after it’s roasted, begins to look like short spaghetti, and it is a healthy substitute for pasta.
Zucchini can also act as a pasta substitute with a kitchen appliance known as the glorious “vegetti.” If you have not seen a vegetti yet, just Google it and prepared to be amazed, because the process of “vegetting” squash of the most satisfying things to watch. Basically what happens is that you place a whole zucchini length-wise into the handles, then crank the handle and be mystified as your whole zucchini turns into elegant ribbons, ready for any type of sauce that your heart desires.