Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Who Knew Acorn Squash Could Be So Lovely?

That’s what I was left wondering last night.

Okay, so, background first… My family belongs to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) called Natural Roots. Basically, it’s a big farm in rural MA that we all pay into in the spring. Then as of the summer we can stop in once a week to pick up our share of vegetables, all grown right there on the farm, all organic, all produced using human and horse power. (No tractors.) It’s good fun. Bit of a hippy vibe, as you can imagine.

One of the treats of it is that what’s available each week varies based on what’s naturally ready to harvest. No two weeks are ever exactly the same, and sometimes you get an abundance of something that you’re not sure what to do with. This happened this week.

Acorn squash. They had a bunch of them in a crate, with a sign below saying to take as many as you like. I didn’t have much of an idea what I’d do with them, but I’m not one to turn down free stuff. So I grabbed an armful.

Got home, unloaded my haul, and began to wonder just what I’d do with the acorn squash. A couple days later, Gudrun proposed Acorn Squash Quesadilla’s from the Smitten Kitchen. I shrugged. Alright. I’ll give it a go. None too enthusiastic, but I didn’t have any better ideas.

The outcome? They were awesome. Absolutely delicious. I don’t know how to explain how/why. It’s partly that it looks like a quesadilla but in with the cheesy fried goodness is a sort of sweet, almost nutty, creamy texture that’s a surprise with each mouthful. I was thoroughly surprised, and very pleased. Enough so that I had to share.

The recipe can be found HERE: Smitten Kitchen, along with awesome photos that look just like my version. ;)

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Anonymous Ethan Iktho said...

Well, doesn't is shows plainly that there IS a way to get you belly full and to feel good without KFC and McDo stuff ?

It would be interesting to know what fantasy readers like to eat. Junk food ? Or some cookery more... imaginative, maybe (if they can offer it and have time to cook, of course) ?

By the way, David, be careful, please, if you go on this way you will end up like a French gourmet...

5:31 PM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...

...I hope so. I hope so. ;)

8:45 AM  
Anonymous Juba the Wolf said...

Very cool. Wish there was something like this in my neck of the woods--though we do have a nice co-op and a farmer's market.

BTW--I commented a while back on your forum--a question regarding the paperback The Other Land's map--you probably didn't see it, with the weird spam that's been going around--anyway, it's on the 'Ask David' 'Stonecoast Question' thread--although I could probably just ask you here huh? ;)


2:24 PM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...

Hi Shawn,

Thanks for the prompting to get over to the forum. It's quiet over there, so I don't check that often. Looks like the last week or so saw a serious increase in spam. I've just deleted most of it - and responded to your post.

9:26 AM  
Anonymous Bruce said...

Acorn Squash: Cut in half and remove the seeds.
Mix some brown sugar, cinnamon, and a pinch of salt.
Coat the squash with butter, sprinkle liberally with the spice mixture, bake them at 400 degrees for about an hour and fifteen or so in a baking pan with a quarter inch or so of water in the bottom. Check for doneness (is that a word?) allow to cool then try to keep yourself from eating all of it.

5:23 PM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...


Yes. That's the way I did them the very first time I cooked them, back in 1987! I haven't made them that way in a while. I think I have too, though, as I have five of the things sitting on my counter right now!

10:18 AM  
Anonymous Shawn Crawford said...

Thanks for the reply David. Perhaps Random House/Anchor can fix the Other Lands map in further editions/printings?

BTW--found out yesterday that I've been accepted to Stonecoast! It was Scott Wolven who read my application/writing sample, he gave me a ring to give me the good news.

So it looks like I'll be meeting you in January--I'm really looking forward to it. Thanks again for your advice and inspiration.


1:19 PM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...


That's terrific! Glad to hear it worked out and definitely looking forward to meeting you this winter. The winter residency is pretty awesome. (Summer is too, really.) Great accommodations, food, venues for events. It's all pretty tightly organized now. Workshops tucked up cozy in the Stonehouse... Yeah, it's a good time.

Scott's a lot of fun too - in addition to being a terrific writer, reader and mentor. I'm glad to hear he liked your stuff. He wouldn't say it if he didn't mean it!



3:17 PM  

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