Friday, September 3, 2010

preserving the harvest-N GA roasters

Today I started to preserve a few of the N GA roaster squash. While the majority of them will go in the root cellar and be stored, I wanted to get an idea of how far each squash will go and make sure that we had some froze, just in case.
 I chose to freeze just three of the squash for now. All I did was peel them, wash them off, and cut how I wanted them.  I label the package and put a date on it and toss them in to the freezer. These fellers peel quite easy, simply run a  veggie peeler down the squash. I  cut some into cubes, some into slices and made others in to fries. I ended up with  nine very full quarts  and enough left for dinner tonight.
 I, of course, saved all my seeds for future planting, but then realized that just three squash gave way more  seed than I or any of my friends could ever use.And to think, I have approximately 50 more squash yet to deal with.  Rather than throwing them out, I am going to roast  many of them and dehydrate some others for critter snacks.
 Pumpkin  and sunflower seeds are not  the only seed that can be roasted and eaten. Some squash varieties are much tastier than pumpkin seed are and many are  much meatier. They  are also very healthy to eat as they are full of potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, iron, copper and vitamin K. They are also a great source for fiber in  the diet.To roast the seeds of any winter squash; Wash, allow to dry overnight on a cookie sheet,  toss with a tablespoon or so of olive oil and a bit of sea salt and roast at 275 for about twenty minutes. Allow them to cool and store in an airtight container.

All the remaining guts and peels can be fed to  the critters for a snack ,so no part of the squash  is going to waste. All pumpkin and winter squash seeds are natural worming agents. They
contain a deworming compound called cocurbitacin. Now  this compound does not work on all parasites but along with natural doses of vitamin A and a healthy diet, one can almost eliminate worm  issues with livestock. To use as a wormer, just grind the seeds up  and mix into feed rations.

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