My favorite new fall picture book is “Sophie’s Squash” by Pat Zietlow Miller, illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf.
A little girl picks out a squash at the farmers’ market. But instead of baking it with marshmallows as her mother suggests, Sophie names it Bernice and takes it with her wherever she goes. Bernice accompanies Sophie to story time at the library, to visit other squash at the farmers’ market, and to practice somersaults by the garden.
But eventually Bernice starts getting a little mushy. Sophie doesn’t want to give Bernice up, but in the end her solution is heartwarming.
Just in time for Thanksgiving, here’s a great recipe for Squash Pie (even though Sophie would object).
- 3 cups cooked squash
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Single pie crust
- Marshmallows for topping
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Halve squash, remove seeds and fiber, and place in an oiled baking dish. Bake until squash is fork-tender. When cooled, scoop and measure 3 cups.
Place measured squash in a large mixing bowl and beat with a hand mixer until smooth. Mix in sugar; then add eggs, one at a time. Add butter, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla and beat until smooth.
Pour filling into unbaked pie crust and bake 30 to 40 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and decorate with marshmallows. Turn oven to broil; return pie to oven and broil until marshmallows are browned.
This article was first published in The Daily Herald on November 13, 2013.