Is squash a favorite food in your family? If so, you already know it's delicious. As a bonus, squash is also full of nutrients such as vitamins A,C, and E as well as potassium, fiber, magnesium, protein, and iron just to name a few. This week, I'm highlighting ten types of squash and the best ways to prepare them.
- Acorn. If you're looking for a fiber-filled squash with a nutty flavor, your search is over. Roasted acorn squash is delicious. Simply cut an acorn squash in half lengthwise, cut off the stem and scoop out the seeds. Brush the inside of the squash with softened butter and sprinkle with cinnamon, or brown sugar. Put them on a baking sheet and roast in the oven at 400 degrees for an hour.
- Butternut. Put aside your mashed potato recipe this fall season and make mashed butternut squash instead. Add melted butter and brown sugar to your mashed squash and this may become your new go-to side dish.
- Spaghetti. Push aside the boxes of spaghetti at the grocery store and try making spaghetti squash. After roasting the squash, scrape the soft fleshy part out with a fork to make your strings of spaghetti. Cook some ground beef, combine it with your spaghetti squash and diced tomatoes, top with shredded cheese and bake for 20 minutes to make a casserole. Give your usual spaghetti dish a little dash of flair!
- Delicata. Roasted delicata squash is simple and tasty. Cut a squash in half lengthwise and remove all the seeds. Next, cut each half into slices measuring about a quarter inch thick. Coat each piece with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put them on a baking sheet and cook them at 425 degrees for 20 minutes. These slices can instantly dress up a plain salad.
- Kabocha. The skin of a Kabocha squash can be either green or red. This squash has a rich flavor that is perfect for making squash soup.
- Carnival. Roasted carnival squash is great when paired with maple syrup and walnuts. Cut the squash in half lengthwise, cut off the stem and clean out the seeds. Brush them with melted butter, drizzle in some maple syrup and roast in a 400-degree oven for an hour. Sprinkle walnut pieces into each squash half and put them back in the oven for ten minutes to toast the walnuts.
- Sweet Dumpling. Enjoy your sweet dumpling squash in an unusual way by making squash bars. Cinnamon, ginger, and ground cloves make this an even more flavorful dessert.
- Blue Hubbard. Roasted Blue Hubbard squash with parmesan cheese is a unique side dish for any meal. Cut a Blue Hubbard squash in half, clean out its seeds, cut off the stem and cut the squash halves into one-inch thick slices. Coat each piece in olive oil and roast them in a 400-degree oven for one hour. Sprinkle parmesan cheese over the roasted squash before serving.
- Buttercup. Buttercup squash is wonderful when paired with apples. Cut a buttercup squash in half so you have two bowl shapes. Put them on a baking sheet and brush the insides with melted butter. Put half a cup of chopped apple in each bowl and sprinkle with brown sugar. Roast them at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Eat the apples with a spoon, and then eat the squash bowl!
- Red Kuri. Roast Red Kuri squash and shallots and add them to your salad. Cut the Red Kuri squash in half, remove seeds, then cut the halves into one-inch thick slices. Slice up four shallots and place them onto the baking sheet with the squash slices. Drizzle all of the items with olive oil and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Roast them in a 400-degree oven for 40 minutes.
So, instead of putting all of your squash out in front of your home and garage as fall decorations, consider putting some on your dinner plate. Preparing your favorite squash in delicious ways can help everyone in your family benefit from all of the nutrients this fruit has to offer. Thanks for reading.-Alan