Do you ever find yourself standing in the produce section of the grocery store, glaring at a mountain of gourds with the best of intention, thinking, “I know you’re good for me, you’re cheap and would probably taste pretty good with Mr. chicken here but I have no time for you. Potato get in my cart, you’re on again tonight.” Hmmm… Did I just illustrate my level of crazy to anyone reading this blog? Oh well, at least now the hubby may understand why I can never grocery shop in under an hour.
Squash are good. Squash are good for you but they are far too easy to ignore because we don’t always know what to do with the hard shelled vegetable, and the traditional roasting route can feel like foreeeevvveeeerrrr when the kids are screaming at your feet for dinner.
Recently, I discovered a very cool (very quick) route to preparing a nutritious and delicious acorn squash. Ready for it? Da da da daaaaa.. in the microwave! It is so simple, you won’t believe how delicious it.
Simplest Squash Solution
Serves 4 as side dishes
- 1 medium acorn squash
- 1/4 cup water or orange juice
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Cut squash in half; discard seeds. Pierce the skin with a fork 3 to 5 times.
- Place squash cut side down in a microwave-safe dish. Microwave on high for 10-12 minutes or until tender.
- Turn squash cut side up. Fill centers of squash with brown sugar and honey; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Microwave on high for 2-3 minutes or until heated through.
- Cut into quarters or scoop out that delicious golden flesh to mash and serve.
So, why love an acorn squash? 1 cup of acorn squash has about 115 calories. That is few more than the same serving of butternut squash, but less than a similar serving of potatoes. In general, squash can be a low calorie substitute for the potato.
In addition to an attractive calorie count, acorn squash also has some of the stuff that the body needs to process other fattier foods. The 9 g of dietary fiber in that 1 cup serving of acorn squash will help the body to deal with the range of foods that you might eat during the day. Unlike some other types of squash, acorn squash has this effective amount of fiber, making it a desirable choice for some diets. With acorn squash, you also get 2 g of protein in the same 1 cup serving, giving your body “fuel” without the cholesterol, saturated fats or other unwanted elements in lots of traditional entrees.
Did I mention it tastes great? With a higher moisture content than other squash varieties, the flesh of an acorn squash is light and slightly sweet. Pairing it with natural sweeteners like honey and maple syrup really draw out the sweeter tones of the squash. The texture is slightly fibrous, which is why I prefer to eat as halves or quarters still attached to the outer flesh. It makes me think, “Sure this tastes like candy but look I’m eating a squash and it’s actually really good for me.” OK. There is a slight possibility that I may talk to myself too much. Oh well. Eat up and enjoy! xoAdd to favorites