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Posts Tagged ‘Barbara Lynch’

This recipe is part of the “Celebratory Goose Dinner” miniseries. For the complete menu, timetable, and printable shopping list, see the introductory post.

WInter Squash

This recipe was another stand out in the menu (I confess, while eating leftovers, I stopped to send my friend the following text message: “I want to marry this squash.”) I’ve expressed my admiration for local chef Barbara Lynch previously, and this latest dish only furthered my respect for her.

It’s a flexible recipe, so you can use whatever squash is fresh and available — in my case, I was limited to butternut and acorn. As I mentioned in the launch post, there are two versions of this recipe circulating the web; the one I used was fairly lacking in comparison to the one I’ve posted below. Had I used this one, it would have been clearer that I should have proceeded to keep the acorn squash unpeeled and in wedges, not cubes. My presentation was a bit lacking, but in a simpler menu, I’d be sure to really dress up the plate. As it was, I was so busy pulling together the gravy, carving the turkey and carting items out to the table that I forgot to put on the maple syrup! I will rectify this next time. And there will be a next time for sure. Enjoy!

Roasted Winter Squash with Maple Syrup and Sage Cream
from Barbara Lynch

  • 1 buttercup or kabocha squash (about 2 pounds) — peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch wedges
  • 1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  •  ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  •  ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 acorn squash (about 1½ pounds) — halved, seeded and cut into 1-inch wedges (with skin)
  • 1 delicata squash (about 1 pound), cut into 1-inch rings (with skin)
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 20 sage leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Baby watercress and shaved pecorino cheese, for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350°F (Also OK to roast at 375°F for a shorter period of time). In a large bowl, toss the buttercup and butternut squash with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar. Season with salt and pepper. Spread the squash out on a large rimmed nonstick baking sheet. Add the acorn and delicata squash to the large bowl. Toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons each of olive oil and brown sugar and season with salt and pepper. Spread the squash out on another large rimmed baking sheet. Roast the squash for 45 minutes to an hour, turning once, until tender and lightly caramelized in spots. Arrange the squash on a large platter and drizzle with the maple syrup.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer with the sage and cook over moderate heat for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand for 5 minutes, then add the butter and season lightly with salt and pepper. Strain the cream into a heatproof cup. Drizzle it over the roasted squash, garnish with the baby watercress and pecorino and serve.

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This past Saturday, I had the pleasure of heading down to the first annual Boston Local Food Festival on the wharf in Fort Point. Now, before I go any further, let me stop right there and take one of my patented asides to address the question half of you are wondering:  Huh? What’s a Fort Point? Where’s Fort Point? I’ve lived in Boston for <<insert number of years here>> and I’ve never heard of it.

For the uninitiated, Fort Point is simply a specific section of South Boston, aka “Southie.” Southie should not be confused with the South End and certainly never confused with the South Shore. (Not that there’s anything wrong with the South Shore. I live there. But it sure ain’t Southie.) Fort Point’s also conveniently across the bridge from South Station. Got it, Southpaw?

For some time now, Fort Point has been hyped as the next “up and coming” area of Boston, and has become a trendy spot for artists, loft dwellers, and foodies, thanks in no small part to the efforts of local superstar chef Barbara Lynch. (More on her another day. Suffice it to say “GODDESS”). Fort Point’s most recognizable resident, however, is the giant Hood milk bottle that stands watch over the Boston Children’s Museum. Check out the Friends of Fort Point Channel website for more info on the neighborhood.
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Now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s move on to the festival. If, like most folks, you judge the success of a festival by the number of attendees, then all I can say is that this was a resounding success. It was CROWDED! Yup, the local food movement has Boston all wrapped up in a tizzy. A tasty tizzy, inspiring an event that was pure Boston, through and through. In a move that brought a smile to my face, they even trotted out Mayor Mumbles (as we affectionately call him) for some grammatically incorrect opening remarks.
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The festival had a little bit of everything, from food to demos to games:

  • free food samples
  • butchering demonstrations
  • food vendors and trucks
  • non-profit orgs and charity crop sharing
  • slow food twister
  • cider pressing & butter making*
  • chicken coops & container gardens
  • a competitive seafood cooking throwdown
  • live music
  • beer tasting

*The butter making was super cool — maybe because I tend to enjoy kids activities more than most kids (or certainly more than an adult ought to). Basically, you take whole cream, put it in a Mason jar, shake it for about 20-25 minutes, and it separates into butter and buttermilk. Seriously, isn’t that COOL????

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In no particular order, some of the things I especially enjoyed were:

Pickles from Grillo’s. Seriously? I couldn’t get a picture of the pickles without someone’s hand in it because there were that many people jockeying about for a taste.
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Pig butchering demo by Chef Matt Jennings. Folks were NOT sticking their hands in THAT photo, but I still couldn’t get close enough for any gory pig photos. You’re crushed, I know. What I didn’t realize at the time was that Matt is the chef at Farmstead down in Providence, which has been on my “To Eat” list for far too long! Marcy, it’s time for another food trip to R.I.
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Fish cooking demo by the Gloucester Fishermen’s Wives Association. You all know how to say “Gloucester,” right? Yeah, it’s “Glosstah”. Angela Sanfilippo (at left) was just fabulous to listen to. Very engaging. I loved hearing her stories of how the organization got started and her own involvement in helping to protect the local fishing industry here in Massachusetts.
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Bobby O’s pita chips. Pretty self explanatory, really. They tasted fantastic, so I snapped a photo in lieu of a business card (it was a “Zero Waste” event, after all!). Go buy some.
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Alternate grains from Four Star Farms. WARNING! About to expose myself as a super ultra geek. I had to buy a bag of the triticale flour because (gulp) in the Star Trek “Trouble with Tribbles” episode, the Tribbles were gorging themselves on the ship’s supply of quadrotriticale. I like that episode. Moving right along now…
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Olive Berries! Never seen/heard of them before. Chef Didi Emmons brought them out during the seafood throwdown and let us give them a try. Tart! (The berries, not Didi). Aren’t they beautiful?
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Didi’s apron. Lovely, eh? Check out the embroidered pocket… It’s a teacup. Sweet!
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THE FOOD. Rightfully, the star of the show.
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We ended up eating the pork and heirloom tomato sandwich from Sportello for lunch, but unfortunately in my haste to consume, I forgot to take a photo of the sandwich itself! Ah well, you can take a look at the preparation, instead.
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All in all, the Boston Local Food Festival was THE hip place to be on Saturday. A complete list of vendors is on the Food Festival site — help support local food!
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My one regret? Supposedly David Coffin (of Christmas Revels fame) was doing a roving performance of sea shanties and the like, and we missed him. We thought we heard him off in the distance at one point, and tried to steer our ship his way. The throngs of people proved too strong for our tired vessel, so we turned alee, never to find out if he in fact wears something other than tights outside of the Christmas season. Perhaps it’s just as well. I like the idea of Mr. Coffin being perpetually in tights. But that’s another story.

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