May 19, 2011 at 6:43 p.m.

Start muskmelon, pumpkin and squash seeds

Start muskmelon, pumpkin and squash seeds
Start muskmelon, pumpkin and squash seeds

Simply plant two seeds per peat pot, at a depth of twice the diameter of the seed, cover with soil and moisten until the pot is wet. By the end of May and beginning of June, you can transplant those seedlings into the garden.

Also at this time, cucumber, lima bean and summer squash can be planted.

A two-week process of hardening off plants will maximize survival of the delicate seedlings before actually transplanting them.

The first step is to minimize watering and stop fertilizing. Then place the plants in a shaded area, gradually increasing the light until it is comparable to the final planting location. But if the weather turns cold, cover or bring them inside.

There are many varieties of winter squash such as acorn, butternut, hubbard, pumpkin, spaghetti and turban. They are called winter squash due to the fact that they have hard shells and can be easily stored for one to six months.

A good source of Vitamin C, B1 and B6, winter squash is known to be rich in carotenes. The darker the color of the squash directly relates to the higher concentration of carotene- providing protection from such diseases as lung cancer and heart disease. Pumpkin is most protective against developing type 2 Diabetes.

Varieties of summer squash are zucchini, crookneck, straightneck and pattypan. As you may have already determined, summer squash has a more fragile skin and doesn't store well, but due to its 95 percent water content, these squash are excellent diet foods and also possess carotenes and Vitamin C.

Enjoying these vegetables is the final thrill in the planting and growing process. Following are a couple of recipes to try with winter and summer squash:

Winter Minestrone

( From: Diabetic Living)

1 Lb. Italian Sausage links, cut into ¾" slices

2 ½ cups peeled winter squash, such as butternut, cut into 1"cubes

1 ½ cups potatoes, cubed

2 med fennel bulbs, trimmed and cut into 1" pieces

1 large onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1-15oz can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

½ tsp dried sage, crushed

4 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 cup dry white wine

4 cups chopped spinach or kale

In skillet, brown sausage and drain. In 5-6 quart slow cooker, place all ingredients and top with sausage, then pour broth and wine over all.

Cook on low 8-10 hours or high for 4-5 hours. Stir in kale or spinach, cover and cook 5 more minutes. Makes 8 servings.

Summer Squash Strudel

5 cups( 1 ½ lbs) coarsely shredded zucchini

5 cups coarsely shredded yellow summer squash

½ tsp salt

8 beaten eggs

2 Tbl snipped fresh parsely or 2 tsps dried parsley flakes

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbl finely chopped onion or ½ tsp minced dried onion

1 Tbl snipped fresh dill or ½ dried dillweed

¼ tsp pepper

8 oz crumbled feta cheese

5 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed

¼ cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In large bowl, combine zucchini, squash and salt. Let stand 15 minutes. Place in colander & squeeze to drain. In same bowl, combine beaten eggs, parsley, garlic, onion, dill & pepper. Stir squash mix and feta cheese. Spoon evenly into 13x9x2 baking pan, cut phyllo sheets in half crosswise. Lightly brush with melted butter. Place phyllo sheet on squash mixture, top with another & brush with butter. With a sharp knife, score through phyllo 16 squares. Bake 50-55 minutes. To prevent over browning, cover with tinfoil last 10 minutes of baking. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Serves 16.


Comments:

Commenting has been disabled for this item.

Events

March

SU
MO
TU
WE
TH
FR
SA
25
26
27
28
29
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
31
1
2
3
4
5
6
SUN
MON
TUE
WED
THU
FRI
SAT

To Submit an Event Sign in first

Today's Events

No calendar events have been scheduled for today.

Events

March

SU
MO
TU
WE
TH
FR
SA
25
26
27
28
29
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
31
1
2
3
4
5
6
SUN
MON
TUE
WED
THU
FRI
SAT

To Submit an Event Sign in first

Today's Events

No calendar events have been scheduled for today.