The West Chester Growers Market reminds me of the Little Engine That Could. Most farmers markets have closed up shop by November, but this one just keeps going. And there’s still good stuff left! Stuff like apples, beets, broccoli, cauliflower, greens, potatoes, mushrooms, and carrots. And then there’s the honey, pasta, baked goods, soap, and meat. (Told you there was good stuff!)
I stopped by the market on Saturday to buy some sweet potatoes, and decided to pick up a squash for Thanksgiving dinner as well. My plan was to grab a butternut squash, but then I came across a vendor with seven or eight baskets of heirloom squashes. And that made my morning.
Disclaimer: I’m not a squash expert; I usually stay in the safe zone of butternut or acorn. But when faced with seven or eight baskets of heirloom squashes, what’s a girl to do? Branch out. After a lot of question-asking, I landed on the Lower Salmon River squash. The sign on the basket said that that the variety was found in Idaho, and since there will be several Idahoans at the Thanksgiving table, it seemed like a natural fit. So I bought two – one for me, and one for Thanksgiving.
On the recommendation of the vendor, I roasted my Lower Salmon River squash. Success! Sprinkled with a little bit of Parmesan, it was truly excellent. The method below can be used for most kinds of squash, as long as the cooking time is varied to match the size and thickness of the squash. So go forth and be bold! Try a funky heirloom squash this Thanksgiving.
- 1 small Lower Salmon River squash (or another equally funky heirloom squash)
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
- grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Cut the squash in half or thirds, with pieces of about equal size. Scoop out and discard the seeds.
- Place the squash pieces in an ovenproof baking dish, cut side up. Add about a half inch of water to the bottom of the dish. Drizzle olive oil over the squash pieces. Sprinkle with salt and freshly-cracked pepper.
- Cover the dish loosely with foil, then bake for 45 minutes, or until the squash is fork-tender. Remove from the dish, and top with the grated cheese.