Gourmet Oyster Mushroom Mix
Chinese Ginger Tea Concentrate
Fourth Wave Farm - Stevensville (WMGC)
Terra Greens Produce - Manhattan
Harlequin Produce - Arlee (WMGC)
Front Street Fungi - Missoula (WMGC)
Five Fox Farms - Moiese (WMGC)
The Hummingbird's Kitchen - Bozeman
*WMGC = Western Montana Growers Cooperative
Kabocha squash is a winter squash variety from Japan, also called Japanese pumpkin. They can be grey, green, or orange on the outside, and are similar in texture and flavor to both butternut squash and sweet potato. Kabocha is truly versatile: it can be roasted whole or sliced, stuffed, sauteed, simmered, or pureed. It doesn't even need to be peeled, although you can if you want to. Just cut off the top and scoop out the seeds (which can also be roasted) before cooking. Just like other hard winter squash, be careful cutting it open! For brevity, I included a simple recipe for roasted squash, but I've been drooling over recipes for squash coconut curry (try this one or this one) that I think the cauliflower and oyster mushrooms would go great in. Hopefully you can make some time to enjoy these great ingredients, too!
Roasted Kabocha with Ginger Tea Concentrate
1 kabocha squash - peeled (optional)*, halved, seeded and cut into 1-inch wedges
2 Tbs ginger tea concentrate - sub maple syrup and grated fresh ginger when you run out
2-3 Tbs regular olive oil or other high-heat oil
Kosher salt to taste
3-4 fresh thyme sprigs or a few pinches dried thyme; or a dash of red pepper flakes or
cayenne chili powder for some heat (optional)
Preheat the oven to 450°. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the squash wedges with the oil,
ginger tea concentrate, salt, and thyme. Arrange the squash in a single layer and roast for 15 minutes. Flip and roast for 15 minutes longer, until golden and tender. Discard the thyme sprigs, if using.
*Peeling squash can be tricky, and messy. I prefer to use a vegetable peeler instead of a knife. Peelers that are Y shaped (i.e. peeler blade is perpendicular to the handle) are easiest to use.
Chef Linda Huang owns The Hummingbird's Kitchen in Bozeman, which offers catering, private chef services, and pop-up dinner events featuring traditional Asian cuisine. Her Ginger Tea Concentrate is made from fresh ginger blended with a touch of Chinese brown sugar. To make tea, simply mix 1 Tbs ginger tea concentrate with 1 cup warm water and steep for a few minutes (I like to steep in a tea strainer to container the larger pieces of ginger). It will warm you right up, can help boost your immune system, and aids digestion! It could also be used to add a delightful ginger sweetness to homemade cookies or pastries, salad dressings, and marinades. Or try it with your oatmeal, yogurt, smoothies, ice cream, you name it! Sub it in any recipe that calls for ginger and maple syrup, honey, or brown sugar. The following recipes are direct from Chef Linda:
The Hummingbird's Kitchen Ginger Tea Marinade
Mix together in a small bowl:
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbs ginger tea concentrate
1/4 C sesame oil
1/2 C honey (warmed if needed)
3/4 C soy sauce or GF alternative
The Hummingbird's Kitchen Ginger Roasted Chicken:
"Marinate bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs or leg quarters in the marinade overnight (or all day) in the refrigerator. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the chicken skin side down in a baking or roasting pan. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 30 to 45 minutes. Uncover the pan, turn the chicken skin-side up, and raise the temperature to 400 degrees F. Continue baking for 45 minutes or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh and the skin is dark brown. I put some sliced potatoes under the chicken. You can put other vegetables, too!"
Katie's Note: I halved the recipe to marinate 2 boneless, skinless chicken thighs for about 4 hours and they turned out great. I also halved the roasting time and didn't flip them since there was no skin to crisp. Needless to say this marinade is very flexible, and could be used on other meats, salmon, tofu, or veggies with various cooking methods and will be delicious! I think using any combination of carrot, cauliflower, kabocha, or mushrooms under - or instead of - roasted meat would be a simple and delicious meal.