A Semi-Vegetarian Recipe
Today’s featured semi-vegetarian recipe is yellow squash. Grow this delicious vegetable in your garden, and preserve it in your freezer. Puttin’ up vegetables (the Southern way of saying preserving, canning, or freezing vegetables) will keep you from having to purchase high-priced organic food at the supermarket throughout the year. Preserve the squash by blanching it.
The blanching process starts with washing the squash, then cutting slices about 1/8″ to 1/4″ thick, depending on how thin you like it. Boil water on the stove, enough to completely cover the squash slices you have. Some people add salt, about two tablespoons, to keep the vegetable color bright and to enhance the flavor. Boil two to four minutes. Quickly place the boiled squash into a bowl of ice water. Let it set only until it cools. Place the squash into freezer bags, pressing out the air as you close the bags. Put up the vegetable in the freezer, and take it out anytime you’re ready for a squash recipe.
When I was growing up, I often watched my mother blanch squash and learned that blanching it meant the vegetable wasn’t completely cooked. I didn’t understand why because it looked done to me and smelled so good. After I married and moved away, she always had one or two bags of blanched squash thawed and ready to cook when I came for a visit. It’s always been my favorite veggie. ‘Til this day, yellow summer squash is my go-to vegetable comfort food.
The first casserole I ever made was squash. I sort of remember how I made it. Today I baked a similar squash dish, and I did not want to stop eating. After my second helping, I had to force myself to stop. After all, this April vegetarian diet is truly about moderation – at least for me. Personally, I don’t see the need to completely eliminate meat from my diet. On the other hand, consuming too much meat is like gluttony – eating more than enough. I like to eat vegetables, however, so doing without meat temporarily or for two or three days a week doesn’t seem too difficult. Since I am not following a total vegetarian plan, my style of vegetarian would be considered part-time or flexitarian. That’s because I still like to eat meat and dairy.
This squash recipe includes dairy and chicken. You can change it up, leave out the meat, and use a dairy-free cheese if you prefer.
Baked Squash Casserole
A squash casserole for the semi-vegetarian
- 3 Yellow Summer Squash
- 1 Yellow Onion
- 1/2 cup Evaporated Milk
- 1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
- 15 Multi-Grain Crackers
- 1/2 cup Four Cheese Mexican Grated Cheese
- 1/2 cup Sharp Cheddar Grated Cheese
Wash the squash, and cut the ends off.
Slice the squash as thin or thick as you prefer.
Slice the onions into big chunks.
Stir in the evaporated milk and Cream of Chicken soup.
Add crushed crackers.
Stir all ingredients together, and bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.
Take casserole out of the oven, add the grated cheese on top, and bake for five more minutes.
I’ve had squash on my mind ever since I started this month’s 30-day blogging about the vegetarian diet. Patty Cakes over at PattyCakesPantry.com is doing 30 days of vegan meals this month. Visit her blog, and try out her recipes. She is a fabulous cook.