|“Ooh! Look at the pretty
flower shaped kugel!”
It’s that time of year again when, here in Chicago, we completely skip spring and go right into summer. It’s like a great sports car – 0 to 60 in a blink of an eye. In my current optimistic state, I’m going to imagine that the beautiful weather we are currently having will stay with us (I’m optimistic, not unrealistic!).
I’m hoping to do some planting this weekend. My family gave me a lilac bush for Mother’s Day that they ordered online (Yes, that was in addition to writing my blog for me!). I happen to love lilacs, and the photo showed this beautiful lilac bush that would bloom over and over again in the summer. Perfect! I’m also hoping to put up a few different varieties of tomatoes, peppers, and possibly a few other vegetables and herbs. There is a garden center not too far from here that sells all different types of heirloom tomatoes. We have grown purple, yellow and the standard red tomatoes. Last year we planted so late that we ended up purchasing fully grown plants from the same center. They weren’t labeled and it was like a surprise party waiting to see what types of tomatoes we would grow! We ended up with tons of amazing yellow grape and red cherry tomatoes that were incredibly sweet and juicy.
|The “huge” Mother’s Day
lilac bush…on my window sill!!
We also grow some flowers in the front of the house. Unlike the protagonist in the book “The $64 Tomato”, we do have a budget. I usually try to find the prettiest, least expensive, and heartiest plants. My sister also taught me the trick to plant spicy, hot peppers in between the flower plants to keep the squirrels from noshing on our flowers. It seems to have worked in the past, and we end up with a lot of fiery hot cayenne peppers throughout the summer.
In honor of the spring planting, this Shabbat I’m making my famous Flower Shaped Squash Kugel, so named because I make it in this cute silicone flower shaped pan. Every time I bring it out everyone always says “Oooh, look at the pretty flower shaped Kugel!” They really do! It’s a family favorite, and everyone loves cutting off a petal sized serving. I love it because it’s healthy (squash), and incredibly easy to make. Using the silicone pan is a plus too because I don’t have to grease it (silicone is naturally non-stick), its easy to clean, and easy to store – I just roll it up and put it in a drawer.
Here’s hoping that the weather holds up this weekend…if not, then there’s always the fun of mystery gardening!! I’ll keep you posted!!
- 2 10 ounce packaged cooked winter squash, defrosted, drained
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 cup sugar or Splenda
- 1/2 cup soy milk, preferably vanilla flavored
- 3 large eggs
- Non-stick vegetable spray (if using non-silicone pan)
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- If not using a silicone pan, spray a 9” round pan with non-stick spray.
- Set aside.
- Place the squash in a large glass bowl.
- Add the flour, sugar, and soy milk.
- Whisk until smooth.
- Add the eggs and blend until thoroughly combined.
- Pour squash mixture into pan.
- Bake for 45-60 minutes until completely set.
- Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes.
- If using a nifty silicone flower shaped pan, invert onto serving dish and serve to amazed guests.
I’d love to hear from you!! Please feel free to leave comments, suggestions and recipes after each blog!!! Don’t forget to pass this blog on to your friends and family!!