August is my favorite month to go to farmer’s markets. I just seem to find more food treasures during this time of the year. Our stands seem to have everything from berries to tomatoes to beans. (Sometimes they have nice young farmhands too but I’m not allowed to bring any of them home.)
On my last trip to the “market”, I was asked if I was interested in some squash that they were offering as a special for that afternoon. To my surprise, I was handed a small bag of these freaky looking flying saucers posing as squash! (I always have a heads up in case there is an alien invasion. I wasn’t sure little green men weren’t going to pop out of these vessels.)
With much apprehension (part picky eater and part fear of alien abduction), I accepted the bag graciously. (I did tie a knot in the bag with the thought of suffocating the aliens on board.)
I came home and researched my UFO’s (unidentified food object) and found that they were in the Pattypan Squash family and this particular group was the Sunburst variety. I will say that I found conflicting information about the naming of the different varieties. It can be assumed that if you order something with Pattypan squash you will be getting a young, summer squash with scalloped edges.
They can be treated much in the same manner as other summer squash varieties and I shouldn’t be scared. (Not like this past April when people reported a UFO in Chicago…..and yes that was another reminder to you to VOTE!)
- 6 Pattypan squashes
- 1 shallot, diced
- 2 Tbsp finely diced celery
- ¼ cup breakfast sausage, cooked
- 2 heels of Italian bread, finely diced (should equal the amount of sausage)
- Salt and pepper
- Olive oil
- Oven 400.
- Cut off the tops of Pattypan squash and then slice down the middle. (If the underside seems too woodsy, take a thin slice off the bottom.)
- Remove the inside pulp, dice it up and set aside.
- Lightly sprinkle some salt and pepper on the inside of the squash. (You can even rub some garlic in there but I didn’t think of that until too late.) Place squash; cut side down, on a baking sheet and place in oven for 15-20 minutes.
- While squash is cooking, heat olive oil in pan. Add diced up squash, shallot and celery. Cook until lightly caramelized, about 5-7 minutes.
- Once the veggies are cooked, add the sausage and bread. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper. Set stuffing aside until squash are finished in the oven.
- Take the cooked squash and stuff. Bake for another 10 minutes and serve.
I must say there was a delightful, buttery sweetness to this dish. I think the saltiness of the sausage was the perfect way to compliment the sweetness without overpowering the gentle flavors of the squash.
All in all, this recipe turned out to be out of this world!!! Maybe that is why they are shaped like UFO’s???