One of the joys of gardening for me is learning the whole life cycle of vegetables. Winter squash, for example, can be eaten young and cooked just like zucchini, or when fully mature, like a pie pumpkin. I don’t plant summer squash any more…I just rob the winter squashes when they’re young, and I don’t feel pressured to try to “keep up” with the zucchini. And you can also grab them at a middle stage that I have really come to enjoy. More firm and robust than a zuke, but not yet so hard that you have to peel them and cook them for a long time.
This is one of the first of the experimental “long pie” pumpkins from this year’s harvest. You can see they’re huge – over a foot long – and that yellow spot you see will eventually creep all over the pumpkin and become a deep pumpkiny orange. This one was in its last days of being tender enough to eat rind and all.
First, I cut the pumpkin in half lengthwise and scooped out the seeds. Then, I cut it into quarter-moons. Finally, a simple sautee in butter, with an onion. These were destined for enchilada filling, so I added chili powder (cumin, cayenne, oregano, etc.) and a little salt. The enchiladas had the sauteed squash, some pulled pork, corn, and cheese wrapped in corn tortillas and doused in sauce. Quite tasty!