Last weekend my fiance, puppy, and I got the opportunity to go to Culpeper, Va (my hometown) for the weekend. We, like many others in the area, were without power for three whole days. When the power went out Friday night we were planning on waiting it out, but when the weather neared 100 degrees on Saturday we couldn’t bare it in our little, second level, apartment. Let’s just say it was hot enough in our place that the butter and cheese started melting in the refrigerator! Luckily, my sweet aunt Susan was nice enough to offer her cool home for us to stay. Not only did it provide air-conditioning, but a beautiful retreat from the hustle and bustle of Northern, VA, and a great time visiting with family. The view from her front porch is one of the best mountain views around.
Before we arrived Saturday, she had made a trip to the Culpeper Farmer’s Market to get some fresh fruits and veggies. One vegetable in particular…….. squash. Sunday night Susan suggested making Ginne’s (my great-grandmother’s) squash casserole for dinner. This dish is one our family would make throughout the summer because it tastes delicious with fresh squash from the garden, it’s easy, it freeze’s well and it’s just as good as a leftover as the first time you make it!
After this weekend, my fiance and I decided we hadn’t quite gotten our fix. We were dying to make it this week for dinner. Being the dietitian, I decided to play around with the recipe a little, trying to make a slightly healthier version. At our local grocery store, throughout the summer they have a “Farmer’s Market” display where they feature local farmers and their vegetables. This way I was able to buy local squash, since I wasn’t able to make it to the Reston Farmer’s Market this weekend.
For Ginnie’s Squash Casserole you’ll need:
- 7-8 medium squash (or 1.5 pounds)
- 1 white onion
- 1 pkg Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing
- 1 can cream of chicken soup (or you can use cream of celery for all of the vegetarians)
- 1 cup sour cream (I used plain, non-fat greek yogurt…it saves you 380 calories, 40 grams of fat for the dish)
- 1 stick of butter (I used 5-6 scoops of “I can’t believe it’s not Butter-Light”)
- Salt & Pepper to taste
Begin with washing all of your vegetables. Cut ends off of the squash and thinly slice. Once all of the squash is sliced, place in a large pot. Fill the pot with water to cover the squash, place on burner and bring to a boil. Once the water is boiling, cook for 20-25 minutes or until tender.
While the squash is cooking pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. Pull out your white onion and dice into small pieces.
Set the onion aside for the time being and combine cream of chicken soup and greek yogurt (or sour cream). Whip together until well blended. Pull out a glass casserole dish (mine is 5″ x 14″) and spray with cooking spray.
Once squash is finished cooking, drain in colander and add squash to cream of chicken soup and yogurt mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste, then take a fork and mash the squash. The goal is to break up the squash so it is no longer in circular pieces. Once you are finished mashing the squash, mix in the onion (raw), stirring until mixed well.
Set squash mixture aside and pull out the butter. Since I used the tub butter, I used about 6 spoonfuls of butter. Put it in the microwave for 20-30 seconds, or until melted. Have your dry stuffing in a separate mixing bowl ( I used a little more than 1/2 of bag). Once the butter is melted, pour over top the stuffing and mix until lightly coated. Place a thin layer of the stuffing on the bottom of your greased casserole dish.
Pour the casserole mixture on top, and then top with the remaining stuffing mix. Place in pre-heated oven for 20-30 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.
I hope you enjoy this squash casserole as much as our family does!