Button squash

I was beyond excited when I saw these squash for sale this week.

In the UK they are apparently known as patty pan squash, in Australia they are known as button squash. Husband-Gusto had never had these before. I bought the entire load available, and last night just steamed them. H-G adored the flavour, and tonight I again steamed them, let them cool then sliced thinly. I drizzled olive oil and lemon juice over the squash, added some dollops of ricotta and sliced mint and this made a really glorious side dish to our meal.

I was really pleased with how this worked out. If I can persuade H-G to let me have raised vegetable beds in our garden (or in his new courtyard) then I could grow these and life would be near complete.

 

Summer meals

Strawberries, cherries and canteloupe with yoghurt, honey, cocoa powder and pumpkin seeds.

‘Blackened’ sesame tofu steaks with salad. The tofu was not meant to be ‘blackened’ but I got distracted, and as ‘blackened’ or ‘charred’ whatever is often to be seen on restaurant menus I figured this fit in nicely.

I cut firm tofu into half, then give it an ‘egg wash’ and dip it in seasoned flour. Then I rolled it in sesame seeds and cooked in olive oil. Very tasty indeed with a little bit of chilli sauce on the side.

Snacks – or The One Where Egusta Tries to Eat More Healthily

bagel with honey, apple and pumpkin seeds.

Toast with tomatoes, olive oil, green olive, pumpkin seeds and fresh basil from my garden.

Baba Ganoush and corn chips. I cannot tolerate aubergine in any other form, but baba ghanoush for some reason- must be the added sesame, lemony, garlicky goodness!

The Baba Ganoush was from the Sabra brand, bought on a rare trip to Sainsbury’s. (I am a committed Aldi woman). However I can see a return trip, purely to stock up on these delicious dips.Just too good.

https://www.ocado.com/webshop/product/Sabra-Baba-Ganoush-Aubergine–Tahini-Dip/250780011?dnr=y

 

Mid Summer

England is having what is described as a heatwave. Day after glorious day of temperatures north of 28 degrees, some even hitting 30. Even I, a natual Australian, am finding this weather to be warm. It is glorious, and even more precious because it is so rare. Just three eeks* until the summer holidays, but there are no guarantees this will last and so we are trying to make the most of it while we can.

The above photo was the view of the harbour from our house at 5 .20 am this morning.

And taken 20 minutes later.

Returning home on the morning school run on the new chain ferry that crosses the river joining East and West Cowes.

A post-school run breakfast of apricots and prunes cooked in a little butter and honey with Greek yoghurt and pumpkin seeds.

Lunch was baked lamb with salad.

This is my preferred marinade or crust for a leg or rack of lamb. I mix a chopped onion, a big handful of chopped rosemary and parsley, some breadcrumbs and a tablespoon of sticky orange marmalade. The sugars in the marmalade caramelise and the result is a little hard to describe; herby, sweet and bitter.

The lamb ready to go into the oven.

Served with a salad.

 

 

 

  • eeks was a typos of weeks.However, when I think of how little of the school year there is left I do, indeed, go ‘eek’!!

Butternut squash, mushroom and spinach lasagne

This is an easy supper,although not all that quick if you take stirring time into account. I made it even easier by buying pre-prepared butternut squash cubes that I tipped into a pan with some leftover chopped mushrooms and fresh spinach. I wilted this down then made an easy bechemel sauce with LOTS of grated nutmeg. Layer with bought lasagne sheets, top with grated cheddar cheese and cook in the oven on about 200 degrees celsius for 30 minutes or until bubbling. Served with a lovely fresh side salad.

This also keeps or freezes well. It can be frozen uncooked after preparing. if, unlike us, you have room in your freezer it makes a good dish to have on hand in case of unexpected visitors or just those days when you simply do not feel like cooking.

Ready to go into the oven

Not the prettiest picture, granted.But creamy and delicious.