If you love a sweet nutty flavour then stop the bus, it is time to get off. Meet Butternut Squash. They look like stretched versions of their cousin, pumpkins, and make a great alternative to potatoes.
Butternut squash contains antioxidants including beta-carotene which gives it such a vibrant orange colour just like our beloved carrots. It also contains phytonutrients which similar to beta-carotene supports eye health.
Butternuts should always feel substantial for their size and the skill should feel firm without any wrinkling or soft spots.
Butternut squash is easy to store – just leave it whole in a cool dark cupboard for months. Once peeled and/or cut, keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. To freeze, just peel and chop into cubes, then spread the cubed squash out on a tray and freeze for a few hours before popping into a freezer bag or container for up to 6 months.
Peel the skin, cut open, scoop out the seeds and then cut into 3cm chunks. You can then either coat in a little olive oil, salt, pepper, maybe some garlic and roast in a tin in an oven pre-heated to 200C/180C fan/Gas 6 for 25-30 mins, or boil until soft, and mash with a knob of butter and some black pepper.
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September - November
Here are some of our favourite ways to engage kids with butternut squash:
Find your go-to meals in our family favourites section and see what veggies work best with them.
Find out how to add more veg to your suppers here.
The moments before food is offered can be a perfect opportunity for engagement that can help make it more likely a child will eat it!
The first thing to do is remove the pressure. If the veg doesn’t get eaten, it’s not the end of the world. There will be other days, other dinners, other chances. Fun is key here – try not to worry about mess, perfect table manners, or playing with food. Instead, focus on making the process of getting the food to the plates, readying the table, and the actual eating relaxed.
The best principles for success here are the Three Rs (role modelling, rewarding, re-offering) which you can read about here.
But there is one more way you can serve for success, and that is giving your child a role. You don’t have to do this every time, just encourage them in their strengths through it when you can.
Here are some of our favourite ideas:
Design a menu
Come up with a silly name or story for a dish
Help with making a meal plan and choosing veg for dinners or snacks
Help to serve up the meal on dishes, lay the table or create a centrepiece to be involved in the physical ‘serving up’ process
The Wonderful World of Veg
Check out our vegepedia. When to buy in-season. How to store them to keep for longer. How to engage children with each veg, and simple ideas of how to prepare and cook them for maximum taste and minimum waste. Select a veg…