Colombian Squash

by Joseph Gentry August. 15, 2018 403 views

I don't plant squash in the garden. Any squash that does come up is a volunteer from the previous fall. All kitchen scraps at our house, including seeds, go into the composting cycle and it all eventually makes its way into the garden soil. This is most likely the source of the squash plants, all part of a larger continuous cycle of life and replenishment.

My wife being Colombian, she likes to make a traditional Colombian soup, "Sopa de Calabaza" or "Sopa de Ahuyama", soup of squash or gourd, in the fall in Minnesota and the flavor never leaves the mind, and it all comes from a tenacious volunteer squash that plants itself in the garden.

Acorn Squash (​Cucurbita pepo var. turbinata)

Acorn Squash (​Cucurbita pepo var. turbinata)

Colombian's are known for their traditional squash soups especially in the higher elevation cities of Bogota and Medellin. The color is mustard rich, the flavor is a deep yet comfortable conversation that soothes the soul. My wife honors her culture by making this soup in the fall and it transports her back home to where there dwells a piece of her heart.

Acorn Squash trifecta.

Acorn Squash trifecta.

The soup is savory and served with chicken. The guizo consists of onion, tomato, garlic, sweet pepper, shallots and a few other clandestine spices from where they come is unknown; all fried up in a well seasoned pan with extra virgin olive oil. Served in a calico bowl, light and dark meat, parmesan and fresh bread, greens.

Solo Acorn Squash.

Solo Acorn Squash.

It won't be long now before the squash are ready to be transformed. For more information, go to Medellin or Bogota', look for a small family owned cocina with a few tables sitting outside. Bougainvillea flowing from the awning, geraniums in terracotta pots around the portico. Ask for Sopa de Calabaza o Ahuyama and you will know you are among kinfolk.

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