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Squashes and Gracie's

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Lia Pretorius writes: It’s the perfect time to squash it!
In my house it’s not optional to like squash. It’s practically a “superfood,” with half an alphabet of vitamins, plus fiber and complex carbs. And, there are so many varieties, it’s not fair to lump all squash into others you tried and didn’t like. Textures, flavors and cooking methods vary so widely. Plus, squash doubles as lovely seasonal décor, is super quick and easy to prepare, and you can get all sophisticated with it if you want.

For winter squashes, we enjoy spaghetti, butternut and acorn mostly year ‘round. But fall generously brings Hubbard, sweet dumpling, delicata (my absolute favorite) and many others I can’t wait to try. Steamed, nuked, sautéed, roasted, or grilled—it’s all good.

This Sunday we were pleasantly surprised by a newcomer to our table: red kuri squash, aka baby red Hubbard. Because of the flesh color, I was suspecting something like a pumpkin taste. Not even close. It reminded us of sweet potatoes and was the first empty dish on the table. We were racing for seconds! I read later that we’re supposed to find it reminiscent of chestnuts. Like looking for undertones of currant or oak in my wine, I’ll pay attention to the chestnut in my red kuri squash next time. Look for the pumpkin colored, teardropshaped squash about the size of a large fist. And do so now, before harvest season ebbs into a sea of winter!

Nick Clark: I went to a bar for lunch and was blown away. I didn’t get bar fare like chicken fingers or nachos. Instead, Gracie’s (326 South West Temple, 801-819- 7563) kitchen cooked me up a rare tuna wrap paired with butternut squash bisque. Not your usual bar fare, I’d say. They also make a pretty good hot buttered rum cocktail with a “batter” made from scratch every day. They have raised my bar of expectations for pub fare, for sure.

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