Friends Drift Inn Farm – Recipes
Winter Squash with Red Raspberries – Warm and Sweet
Honoring Mountain Traditions
Baked Cushaw is an Appalachian classic. If you are not familiar with our ancient winter squash, check out my explanation Just What is a Cushaw?
To bake a cushaw, takes a bit of work. The squash can weigh upwards of 10 pounds. For this recipe, there is no need to peel. We usually break the cushaw down by halving, cleaning out the “stringy guts, saving the seeds for next year, then cutting (hacking) into uniform sized pieces. I like them angular, for interesting visual appeal.
I usually bake off the entire cushaw. What is not used in this recipe is scraped from the hull, pureed, and frozen for upcoming culinary adventures. The cushaw can be used in the same manner as you would use pumpkin. Appalachian bakers have long preferred cushaw pie to pumpkin pie for its unique flavors.
For this recipe I used a very special flavored olive oil from Stuartos which has a blood orange infused. The puree from this will be used in other sweet confections. If you wish for flavor neutral, use vegetable oil that is organic and non-gmo.
I hope you will seek out cushaws at your local farmers market. If you have room for sprawling vines that are low maintenance and resistant to a number of vine pests grow cushaws in your heirloom garden next year.They are a giggle.
Baked Cushaw with
Raspberry Sorghum Sauce Recipe
Dessert Recipe, Side Dish, Winter Squash
- cushaw, peeled and broken down into hunks more or less uniform in size
- olive oil (I used Stuartos Olive Oil with Blood Orange flavor)
- sea salt
- freshly ground pepper
Raspberry Sorghum and Bourbon Sauce
- 1 1/3 Cups of fresh raspberries (6 ounce package I used Driscolls) Reserve a few berries for garnish
- 5 tablespoons of sorghum
- 3 tablespoons water
- 3 tablespoons bourbon (I used Woodford Reserve Bourbon)
- juice of one orange
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- orange zest for garnish
- English walnutsfor garnish
1. Preheat oven to 400°. Line 2 or 3 lipped baking sheets with foil.
2. Break down squash into thirds, removing seeds. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.
3. Place hull side down on baking sheets. Add ½ cup water to each sheet. Cover snugly with aluminum foil.
4. After about 30 minutes check progress. You could at this point brush the pieces you intend to serve (not freeze) with a little sorghum to help brown.
5. Generally it takes about an hour to an hour and half to get cushaws fork tender. It’s just one of those things you have to wing. When cushaw is ready, you can easily remove the hull and then cut into angular pieces. Reserve enough for this recipe, and freeze the rest for later.
6. While waiting on the baking, in a medium heavy saucepan combine raspberries, sorghum, and water over medium heat, stirring constantly. Bring down to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes until berries collapse.
7. Pour through a strainer to remove seeds. Add bourbon, orange juice and about a teaspoon of orange zest. Return to simmer for about 3 minutes. If you like the syrup thicker, add more sorghum but go easy. A little sorghum goes a long way.
Drizzle with sauce, garnish with berries, walnuts, and orange zest , and serve immediately.
Sauce will make about 6-8 servings.
Notes and Observations:
This can be plated individually or on a platter. We enjoy this a warm dessert around the winter dinner table; but it is equally welcome as a warm breakfast treat sprinkled with granola. Once you have gone through the initial roasting of the cushaw, what you put back in the freezer is easy to reheat and serve. We love cushaw with berries and nuts! We grow both, but in the winter season we are grateful to have American growers who ship berries to our local grocery store.
Disclaimer: I am participating in #DriscollsMoments raspberry promotion and received manufacturers coupons for raspberries. (Driscolls are retailed at Whole Foods Market in Lexington Green) I recieved 5 lbs of California Walnuts in a recent writing contest so I had to use them up! Giggles
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