What’s in the box 16/17 February
Life has been keeping me on my toes of late, but here I am at last and you can find the list of this weeks contents here.
We have withstood the bucket-loads of rain that have fallen this week, but only just. Too much rain caused our lights to short out and we had the wonderful local electrician out at 8.45 pm last night and again this morning, but all is sorted and we are once again gaily illuminated.
It is great to be able to actually eat the turning of the seasons as the first pears of autumn appear in our boxes this week – along with what must surely be some of the last plums of summer! More of those fantastic Dutch Creme spuds this week – and even more for us! It is always well worth looking in the swap box at your city cousins pick up point to see what others have traded. This week our swap box had a handful of potatoes in it so I decided that we could do very nicely without our Bok Choy and grabbed the spuds! There will be a meal of baked potatoes in our very-near future.
With all of the rain lately, you could be excused for thinking about winter dishes and the delicious little pumpkins are so sweet and tasty in a soup. Butternuts are technically a squash and come from the Cucurbitaceae family, other members of which include the cucumber, zucchini and pumpkin. They have been cultivated for hundreds of years with some suggestions that they may have been eaten in the Americas as long as 5,000 years ago. Pumpkins in general are a familiar ingredient in north American meals, but the Butternut is most popular here in Australia, in New Zealand and in South Africa.
For something just a little different with butternuts, try peeling, seeding and cubing the pumpkin. Salt it and drain it in a colander for 5-7 minutes, then toss in flour and fry in a shallow frypan in melted butter, turning occasionally, until tender. Pile cooked pumpkin in a serving dish and sprinkle with a teaspoon of sumac and 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper. (If, like me, cayenne frightens you, reduce to your tolerated amount.) Serve with a simple garlic and yoghurt sauce on the side.