Kabocha squash for the win

A few weeks ago at the Rittenhouse farmers’ market, we saw that Z Food Farm was selling orange kabocha squash. We picked one up, and now we are addicted! We find it sweeter and firmer than pumpkin, but much easier to deal with than butternut, since you don’t have to peel it (the skin is delicious). We enjoy the green kabochas, but the orange was even better.

We didn’t have any particular plans for the kabocha, but thanks to our friends Lisa and Will, two recipes fell into our lap that both turned out brilliantly. Since there are only two of us, we halved the squash and used part of it one day and saved the other part for later.

Kaddo Bowrani

Will and Lisa shared a wonderful recipe for kaddo bowrani (Afghani pumpkin). It was easy and straightforward: a base of garlicky yogurt, topped with cooked squash (roasted with cinnamon and sugar, to which we also added cardamom), and then covered in a tomato meat sauce. This dish was absolutely delicious, with a delightful contrast between the creaminess of the yogurt, the sweetness of the squash, and the savory goodness of the meat sauce.

Roasted kabocha squash

Kaddo bowrani

Since we’re all about local ingredients, in addition to the local kabocha squash, we used Pequea Valley Farm yogurt, made in Lancaster County from grass-fed Jersey cows. The garlic and onions were from the local farmers’ markets, and instead of ground beef, we used house-made chorizo sausage from Di Bruno Brothers.

Pasta with Squash, Roasted Garlic, and Sopressata

A few nights later, we decided we wanted to do something with the other half of the squash. Luckily, our friends Lisa and Will came through again by sharing with this recipe for Penne with Acorn Squash and Pancetta. Obviously, we used the Kabocha Squash instead of the Acorn. But we also used sopressata instead of the pancetta since that’s what we had on hand.

The recipe is pretty simple. We roasted the squash and a head of garlic. After chopping up the meat, we fried it and then removed it and deglazed the pan with some chicken broth. We added some fresh rosemary and the roasted garlic, smashing the garlic as we stirred.  We chopped up the squash and added it to the pan along with some cooked ziti. Done and delicious.

We’re looking forward to getting another kabocha squash soon and doing this all over again!

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