Aunt Fanny’s Summer Squash Casserole

This week I have my favorite recipe for yellow summer squash. This squash is plentiful in stores in the summertime, why not eat it more often?  I can pinpoint “Aunt Fanny’s Summer Squash Casserole” as the turning point in “how I learned to like to eat squash.” I never liked “squash”, but this casserole changed my mind. Aunt Fanny's Yellow Squash Casserole - IMG_0660

Can you learn new food tastes and preferences?

I do believe it is possible to acquire new food tastes. We can learn to like new foods. I think alot of this is how a food is prepared; as well as a person becoming more mature, self-confident and adventurous. I can name several vegetables and foods that I didn’t care for as a child–Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, mustard greens, squash and shrimp, fish. Now I like all of these foods; and for most of the foods I can remember the recipe or event that changed my mind.Aunt Fanny's Yellow Squash Casserole - -3For yellow squash, the recipe “Aunt Fanny’s Baked Squash” from a neighbor, Doris Metzler, was the event that taught me to like squash. (I now call it, “Aunt Fanny’s Summer Squash Casserole”, to make it more descriptive.) I have the date, July 1981, written on the recipe card; it’s a recipe that I’ve kept all these years. The squash is cooked and mashed; then mixed with eggs and seasonings including a bit of sugar. The flavors of this egg-type custard casserole blend together. The squash flavor isn’t strong and the texture isn’t mushy–the main two objections to squash. The squash casserole is delicious–can’t stop eating it.

Making the Squash Casserole

Here are the ingredients for the squash casserole. Three pounds of squash is eight small/medium yellow squash; this makes a large casserole.Ingredients for Squash Casserole - IMG_0623

Cut up the squash in chunks and cook/steam in a little water on the stove until tender. Doing this in two batches makes it easier to manage the large amount of squash. Drain, then mash or puree the squash. I use a food processor.Puree Squash - 2 - IMG_0628Puree or finely chop the onion and bell pepper.Chop Onions and Bell Peppers - IMG_0631Mix everything together — pureed squash, seasonings (onion and bell pepper), eggs, salt, pepper, sugar and margarine.  Yes, a little sugar adds to the flavor; but this casserole isn’t too sweet. I usually reduce the amount of margarine given in the recipe by half.Casserole ready to bake

Add a bread crumb topping (bread crumbs or cracker crumbs and margarine) and bake for an hour.Aunt Fanny's Yellow Squash Casserole with Crumb Topping - IMG_0648

Yum! A good way to learn to like squash and to eat more vegetables.Aunt Fanny's Yellow Squash Casserole

Here’s the original recipe from family friend and neighbor.

Aunt Fanny's Baked Squash by Doris Metzler

  • Time: 1-1/2 hour
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 3 lb. yellow summer squash (8 small/medium squash)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion (1/2 small white onion)
  • 1/3 bell pepper, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 stick margarine, melted – divided*
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup cracker or bread crumbs

Method and Steps

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly oil large casserole dish.
  2. Wash and cut up squash. Boil until tender. Drain. Mash.
  3. Add all ingredients except 1/2 of the margarine and bread crumbs.
  4. Add crumbs to remaining melted margarine.
  5. Pour mixture into casserole dish and spread crumbs over top.
  6. Bake at 375 degrees for one hour or until brown on top.

*I often reduce the margarine by half.

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