Roasted Kabocha Squash and Creminis with Fresh Herbs

2 small or 1 large kabocha squash (you could use buttercup or red kuri as well)
2 leeks, sliced lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch strips
3 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
3 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp coarse sea salt
1-pound cremini mushrooms, wiped clean
1 Tbsp. minced fresh rosemary
1 Tbsp. minced fresh sage

1. Preheat oven to 425.
2. Wash squash well, cut in half and remove seeds. Chop into bite sized pieces (leaving skin on) and toss in a large bowl with leeks. Add vinegar, oil and salt.
3. Spread onto cookie sheet and roast 10 minutes. Remove from oven, add mushrooms and continue roasting another 10 minutes.
4. Sprinkle with rosemary and sage and roast a final 10 minutes (a total of 30 minutes). Remove from oven and serve.

Summer Vegetables Stewed in Their Own Juices

You can vary amounts of each vegetable or add and subtract any to fit the season. Just follow the basic idea. You will need a small batch of pesto to go with this.
3 TBLS olive oil
¾ lb. new potatoes (fingerlings are best)
2 bay leaves
½ lb. green beans, trimmed
2 onions, chopped
5 medium tomatoes, chopped into large pieces, juice reserved
3 garlic cloves, cut in half
3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 bell pepper
6 fresh sage leaves
1 lb. summer squash cut into large pieces
4 carrots, julienned
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Warm the oil on low heat in a Dutch oven or other deep, heavy bottomed pot.
When fragrant add the onions, garlic, thyme, and sage.
Cover and cook while you prep the other veggies.
Start adding the veggies and salt each layer.
Add in this order for best cooking rates: carrots, potatoes, peppers, summer squash, tomatoes.
Pour the reserved tomato juice over it all and cook covered for about 40 minutes or until carrots and potatoes are tender.
If pot seems dry during cooking add a few TBLS of water or white wine.
Serve in soup bowls with a generous dollop of pesto on top.


Butternut Squash Gratin


2 leeks, chopped
3-5 TBS olive oil
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried sage
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 butternut squash
1/4 lb Gruyere cheese, grated

1. Prepare squash by cutting in half lengthwise, scooping out seeds, and cutting into thick half-circles. Heat some of the olive oil in a frying pan and fry the squash in batches until brown on both sides.
2. Sauté the leeks, garlic, and herbs until leeks are soft. Add the tomatoes and simmer for 30 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
3. Spread a thin layer of the tomato sauce over the bottom of a pyrex baking dish, then a layer of squash, then a dusting of the grated Gruyere. Repeat these layers until all the squash is used.
4. Bake at 350 until the sauce bubble up through the squash and the cheese on top is browned.