Monday, April 22

Acorn Squash in EZ-3 Solar Oven


 One of the easiest ways of solar cooking squashes, root crops, and corn, is by simply placing them whole in the solar oven and letting nature take its course. Within a few hours, you have a delicious vegetable, prepared in its own jacket, still full of all the nutrients, to serve in your favorite way. I made a much larger EZ-3 oven for the Midtown Market booth, and decided to check out the timing with the added insulation. Got slammed with a stomach virus and have only just felt well enough to catch up on my blogging. The picture is blah, and for that I apologize, but it's the end result that counts.
Because I was using was is basically and cardboard and tinfoil solar oven, I knew that the cooking times would be at least two-and-a-half times conventional timing, but still faster than a slow cooker. In addition to the insulation used, I had a rice bag preheating for a bottom base, and used craft plastic (available in sewing departments) for the glazing and covered the entire EZ-3 oven. You can also use a large oven bag opened to a single layer, or use two to reduce condensation.
As I've often mentioned, I have no problems 'helping' my solar cooking by preparing foods so that they will cook evenly and faster, the same as one would do for a crock pot meal. Knowing that it would definitely take longer to cook the acorn squash, I peeled and sliced it, first, positioned it in a metal baking pan and added 1/2 cup seasoned juice. Covered it with foil and placed it in an oven bag.
Within two hours, squash is ready and simply mashed in the delicious gravy. Unfortunately, I forgot what the mixture was, exactly, but know there was chicken stock, 3 star anise, salt and pepper, a pinch of cinnamon, and -- then, my mind goes blank. So sorry. But, it was cooked through and very easily mashed with a fork, after removing the star anise and seeds.
It was delicious and proved that the EZ-3 does a great job.


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