It's a miserable time of year for me, I'm not a cold weather person. The best place to be throughout these winter months is in the warmth of the kitchen preparing (and eating!) comfort food. I'm working my way through the squash that was harvested in the autumn. After such a warm summer my crop was good, with enormous squash with hard skins that aid their storing. It's quite a tussle to cut into them. Himself came to my aid with a big knife and a lot of muscle power.
There is a huge amount of flesh to be got from one large squash, not to mention a whole lot of seeds. I'm saving the seeds for the local swap on March 9th. The flesh I've chopped into small cubes and put in bags in the freezer. It's handy to pull out a bag all ready to use as the basis of a variety of meals and soups.
A favourite recipe is a vegetable traybake with halloumi cheese.
Put cubes of peeled raw beetroot, squash and red onion and red pepper strips into a roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil, sea salt and herbs and bake for half an hour or so. Add lots of peeled garlic cloves, cherry tomatoes and cooked chick peas and roast for another twenty minutes.
Put thin slices of the cheese on top of the veg and grill until the cheese melts and starts to brown. Sprinkle with fresh basil leaves and serve.
While penetrating the skin of the squash was a battle, some of my citrus have split open of their own accord before the fruit has ripened. I don't know why. Perhaps the tree needs more water, but I'm loathe to use too much in the winter, especially in these frosty conditions.
Hope you are all keeping warm and well.