This Yum-Yum Friday is a little different. Mostly because this isn’t an exact recipe, but something I just made on the fly. Just to give y’all extra courage to try new things in your kitchen, too. I happened to make a ragout on the fly.
Okay. I know a ragout usually involves meat and it is with or without vegetables. However, I had a shit ton of squash, so I decided to do a straight up veggie ragout with different varieties of squash. Sue me.
Recently, the lady who I go to to get muh hair did (she’s also a longtime friend–HOLLA, PEGGY!) provided me with a bounty of squash. Don’t believe me?
Wasn’t lying, was I? Ignore the bananas–got those from K. Roger.
So, you probably recognize the zucchini–both the green and orange. However, if you’re like me, you probably aren’t super familiar with those miniature green pumpkin-looking squash. Well, those are CUPCAKE SQUASH. Unfortunately, they don’t taste like cupcakes. Not that they taste bad (more on that in a minute), but wouldn’t everything be better if it tasted of cupcakes? Yeah, it would. Don’t lie to me.
So, I was unfamiliar with this variety of squash. But I was intrigued. Not liking a fruit or vegetable is super rare for me (shout-out to my mortal enemies the sweet potato, radishes, beets, and raw blueberries!). Before I knew that I was making a ragout–I knew that I had to taste these cupcake squash to see what I was up against.
Got to cut into ’em, right?
Cutting is what I did. If you like that knife–it’s a Rachel Ray Futuri. I can’t find that exact knife on Amazon anymore–maybe it’s dangerous and has been recalled, but whatever. It’s a good knife. And if you like the cutting board–just go to Walmarts (“respeck” for the white Black & Decker toaster in the background there–which can also be utilized as a weapon in a pinch).
Anyhoozles, I sliced the very tops and bottoms off, and cut myself off a hunk:
That’s what I look like when I taste anything. Sorry for the angle. I know that seeing up my nose was not what you all had in mind today.
Back to the squash–I was pleasantly surprised. It smelled really clean and fresh and had the flavor and texture of a firmer, less juicy cucumber. Even JoJo enjoyed the smell and flavor–and she’s a damn picky eater. Inneresting…
I just happened to have some leftover sliced summer squash in the freezer from when JoJo’s coworker sent a bunch home with her as well as some fresh crushed tomatoes–so ragout it was.
Here’s what I did:
I got a big skillet over medium heat, drizzled some extra virgin olive oil (the only thing in the house with that distinction) and tossed in the squash. Sprinkled some salt and pepper and let that shit thaw/cook down for about ten minutes. Once it was cooked down a bit:
Working from upper left, I tossed in the cubed up cupcake squash, garlic, herbs and spices (some cumin, thyme, basil, more salt and pepper, red chili flakes, and some smoked paprika), stirred it all up, covered that shit, and let it cook for twenty minutes.
Then I poured in my tomatoes (like a 28oz can’s worth), left it uncovered, and let it simmer away for half an hour until it was thick and all of the water was evaporated. Tasted it for salt and pepper, adjusted, and…
I served the ragout up with roasted Brussels sprouts, butter parmesan noodles–and JoJo and I had a late night yummy meal that was also healthy AF. Except for the butter and parmesan–but hey, live a little, right?
So, here’s the thing. JoJo didn’t like the texture. Picky, remember? She said she’d eat the cupcake squash again raw–but not cooked up like this. Oh, well. Can’t please ’em all. Bet if there was some bacon in there she would’ve choked it down…
Anyway, I’m off to grate up green and orange zucchini to freeze for Zucchini Bread later and chop up some more cupcake squash for…something…later on.
Until next time…