Watermelon,Pumpkin and squash

Clagett Farm CSA Recipes
Fall 2006

Recipes from “Cook For Life Balance” by Rita Calvert

Watermelon/Health News

Watermelon is not only great on a hot summer day, this delectable thirst-quencher may also help quench the inflammation that contributes to conditions like asthma, atherosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer, and arthritis.

Sweet, juicy watermelon is actually packed with some of the most important antioxidants in nature. Watermelon is an excellent source of vitamin C and a very good source of vitamin A, notably through its concentration of beta-carotene. Pink watermelon is also a source of the potent carotenoid antioxidant, lycopene. These powerful antioxidants travel through the body neutralizing free radicals.

Mediterranean Watermelon Salad
A bit of feta cheese adds a Greek touch!

6 cups torn mixed salad greens
3 cups cubed seeded watermelon
1/2 cup sliced onion
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup watermelon vinaigrette
cracked black pepper

2 tablespoons currant jelly
1/4 cup pureed watermelon*
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon garlic pepper
1 teaspoon vegetable oil

In large bowl, mix all ingredients except vinaigrette and pepper. Just before serving, toss salad mixture with vinaigrette. Garnish with pepper.

A sweet-sour dressing tastes great on fruit or green salads! In small saucepan, heat jelly just until melted; cool. Add remaining ingredients; stir until well blended. Store in refrigerator; shake well before using. Makes about 1/2 cup.
*In blender, process chunks of seeded watermelon until pureed

5 Minute Watermelon Frappe
Serves 2
A great alternative to watermelon slices.

4 cups cold watermelon chunks
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
8 mint leaves

Run the blender at medium speed and drop chunks of watermelon through the feed hole one at a time until they are well integrated.

Add the lime & mint and run the blender at medium speed for 1 minute until the watermelon has liquefied.

Strain into a bowl with a pouring lip. Pour into goblets, garnish with a sprig of mint and enjoy!

Maple Citrus Watermelon Glazed Chicken
Makes 2 cups

Watermelon Glaze
2 cups watermelon puree
Juice from 3 fresh lemons
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1⁄2 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Simmer ingredients together in a heavy saucepan for 20 minutes or until sauce is thick
Keep warm.

Serves 8
Skinless boneless chicken breast splits
2 cups pineapple juice
1⁄2 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
3 cloves minced fresh garlic

Place the chicken in a large zipper lock bag with rest of the ingredients and seal tightly. Allow to marinate at least 2 hours or up to 12. Grill until cooked and arrange on a warm platter. Pour the glaze over the chicken and serve immediately.

Caribbean Watermelon Salsa
Makes about 4 cups

2 cups chopped seeded watermelon
1 cup chopped fresh pineapple
1 cup chopped onion
1⁄4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1⁄4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon chopped jalapeno pepper or jerk seasoning (or to taste)

In a large bowl combine ingredients; mix well. Refrigerate, covered, at least 1 hour to blend flavors. Stir before serving.

Minced Pork and Watermelon Lettuce Wraps
Easy Wraps You Can Do At Home
Serves 4 - 8.

1 pound lean ground pork
1 tablespoon fresh minced garlic
1 tablespoon fresh minced ginger
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 cup fresh chopped scallions
1 cup Hoisin sauce
1 cup toasted pine nuts
1 cup minced seedless watermelon
8 large Bibb (or iceberg) lettuce leaves

In a heavy, non-stick skillet over high heat brown the pork until well done. Reduce heat to medium and add the garlic, ginger and soy sauce to the pan. Stir for a few minutes and then add the scallions. Remove from heat and add the Hoisin sauce and pine nuts. Stir to mix well. Fold in the watermelon. Divide among the lettuce leaves, wrap and serve immediately.

Old Fashioned Watermelon Pickle

2 quarts prepared watermelon rind
Pickling lime
1 quart white or cider vinegar
5 cups sugar
1 tablespoon pickling spice
1 tablespoon cloves
1 tablespoon whole allspice
1 large cinnamon stick, broken into pieces

Prepare rind by removing green outer rind and red flesh; cut into 1-inch pieces. Combine pickling lime and water in a ratio of 2 tablespoons lime to each quart water and pour over prepared watermelon rind. Make enough to cover all the rind. Soak at least 8 hours, but preferably overnight, stirring the mixture from time to time during the soaking. Drain off lime water. Rinse rind carefully under running water several times to remove all of the lime. Drain rind pieces on a kitchen towel.

Make a syrup of vinegar, 1 cup water and sugar in a large stainless steel or enamel saucepan. Tie spices together in cheesecloth or muslin and add to the syrup. Simmer mixture until all sugar is dissolved. Taste carefully (it is quite hot) and add more sugar or vinegar to taste. Add watermelon rind and boil until transparent and syrup is thick. Remove spice bag.

Put rind and syrup into hot jars, seal and process in boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

Winter Squash~Pumpkin Prep

I put cut up pieces (large ones) already seeded into my crock pot for 2 or so hours on high. When a fork can easily pierce the squash/pumpkin pieces, I remove it and scrape the flesh into my food processor and whirl a bit. Then I freeze in 1 and 2 cup increments. Soup and pie are obvious and delicious choices, I also put 1 cup of this puree into nearly every batch of muffins, waffles, cookies, pancakes, biscuits etc. that I make. I just take an existing recipe and add my cup of squash puree. It nearly always works, and my kids are none the wiser.

A Few Quick Serving Ideas:

Top puréed cooked winter squash with cinnamon and maple syrup

Steam cubes of winter squash and then dress with olive oil, tamari, ginger and pumpkin seeds

Top "strings" of spaghetti squash with pasta sauce

Add cubes of winter squash to your favorite vegetable soup recipe

Curried Mushroom & Squash Soup
Moosewood Cookbook by Molly Katzen

At least one and one-half hours to prepare & simmer 4-5 servings
2 medium butternut or acorn squash
2-1/2 cups water or stock
1 c. orange juice
2 Tbl. butter
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 medium clove crushed garlic
6 oz. mushrooms, sliced1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp salt (or to taste)
a few dashes cayenne
optional: fresh lemon juice
garnishes: chopped, toasted, almonds yogurt

Split the squash lengthwise and bake face-down in a 375s oven on an oiled tray, 30 minutes or until quite soft. Cook and scoop out the insides. You'll need about 3 cups worth. Put it in the blender with the water or stock and puree until smooth. Combine in a kettle or saucepan with the orange juice.

Heat the butter in a skillet and add the garlic, onion, salt and spices. Saute until the onion is very soft. (You may need to add a little water if it sticks). Add mushrooms, cover and cook 10 minutes.

Add the saute to the squash, scraping the skillet well to salvage all the good stuff. Heat everything together very gently. Taste to correct seasoning. Since this is a fairly sweet soup, you may want to spruce it up with some fresh lemon juice.

Serve topped with yogurt and chopped, toasted almonds. Note: this soup need not be served immediately. Simmer a while, and the flavors can mature.

Spaghetti Squash & Shrimp Salad
6-8 servings

Dressing (Nuoc Mam)
4 cloves garlic
2 small red chilies or 1 1⁄2 Tbsp.Vietnamese chili-garlic sauce
1 C. warm water
2 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp lime juice (about 1 large lime)
1⁄2 C. fish sauce
1 medium Spaghetti squash (4 –– 4.5 lb) yields about 9-10 cups cooked squash.
1 cup loosely packed Thai/Holy Basil OR Mint
1 1⁄2 lb. Medium sized shrimp

To make the dressing, cut chilies into small rings. Place chilies, garlic and sugar into a mortar and pound into a coarse, wet paste. (If you don't have a mortar, just chop with a knife.) Transfer to a small bowl and add the warm water, lime juice and fish sauce. Stir to dissolve. Set the dressing aside.

Cut squash in half lengthwise; remove seeds. Place squash cut sides up in a microwave dish with 1/4 cup water. Cover with plastic wrap and cook on high for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on size of squash. Add more cooking time if necessary. Let stand covered, for 5 minutes. With fork "comb" out the strands. Let it cool.

While the squash is cooking, boil the shrimp in lightly salted water. Drain and rinse in some cold water. Peel and butterfly them after they cooled. Add to Squash.

Chop the basil coarsely and add to squash. Mix until the shrimp and basil are evenly distributed.

Mix dressing into squash mixture right before serving. There is more dressing here and is needed for a 4 lb. squash. Mix in only as much dressing as needed to your desired taste. The remaining dressing can be used as a condiment for dipping meat, seafood, and vegetables or for drizzling on plain rice. The dressing will keep up to two weeks in the refrigerator.

Mix cooked spaghetti squash with a little egg and flour. Add fresh minced ginger, white pepper and sliced green onions (but no salt). Fry like a potato pancake and serve with soy sauce. Yum!

Cook Spaghetti Squash by cutting in half and cooking like a pumpkin or butternut squash in the oven until it can be easily pierced by a fork. Gently scoop out sqush 'noodles' and serve hot with red sauce or cooled like a noodle salad with your favorite dressing.

Saute garlic and butter until the garlic is soft. Cut the squash in half and steam the squash until tender. Then separate from the shell by running a fork along the length of the squash to get spaghetti-like strands. Add to the pan and toss to coat with butter and garlic. Add fresh diced tomatoes and torn fresh basil, cook for a minute or two and add salt and pepper to taste.