Winter Squash: Which one do I buy?

Ok, so you’re all ready to try winter squash. You get to the market and whoa, there are so many to choose from. What to buy? Here is a list of some of the more popular varieties and their uses. So read through this. Maybe even write down a few selections that sound good to you. Then, take your list with you to the Farmers Market. If you find a squash that you’re now sure about how to use it, ask the seller. In most cases, they are more than willing to share their knowledge about the vegetables they grow and how to use them. I have noticed also, that many of the markets offer slices of some of the larger squashes. This is great news for those of us who don’t want to buy a large quantity. If you see a large squash that you want to try and it’s not already cut. Ask if you can buy a piece instead of the whole thing.

Thanksgiving is next week so this will be a good weekend to buy your winter squash for that soup, side-dish or pie that you are going to make.

Don’t know where your local market is located or what time it starts. Check out the Blogroll on this page. Have a great time at the market this weekend. I know I will.

Acorn (Danish). Most are deeply furrowed, relatively small; Table Queen is best known.

Banana Maxima type with several named varieties, but all are elongated; typically about 5 pounds; blue-skinned variety is recommended over the pink-skinned types; roast and eat from the skin.

Buttercup Maxima type widely praised for flavor; small (about 1 ½ pounds) with dark green rind and dense orange flesh; all uses.

Butternut Long neck has a bulbous base; easy to slice and peel; high yield of dense, sweet, pale orange flesh; excellent all-purpose variety.

Delicata Elongated squash with green and gold striations on  a cream background; 1 ½ to 3 pounds; relatively thin skinned; light-textured golden flesh; superb eating out of the skin.

Hubbard Typically bulbous in the middle and tapered on the ends; medium to large; maxima species; it is superb eating.

Jack Be Little Mini pumpkin (about ½ pound) with orange rind and flesh; tasty single-serving format.

Kabocha Rounded Japanese squash weighing 2 to 3 pounds on average with a dark green rind and deep orange flesh; meat is dense, sweet, dry, sweet potato like; good for pie and soup.

Marina di Chioggia Conversation piece; large (about 10 pound) squash with a warty blue-green rind and golden flesh; widely praised for it’s fine flavor.

Munchkin Small and round with a reddish-orange rind and yam-colored flesh, dense, nutty, sweet.

Musquee de Provence Large (about 13 pounds) deeply lobbed, flattened squash with a green and gold rind; orange flesh; a favorite for just about anything.

Red Kuri Medium size (about 3 pounds) squash with a reddish-orange exterior and a deep orange flesh; maxima species; good for roasting.

Sugar Pie Medium-sized pumpkin about 2 ½ pounds. Super-sweet flesh is excellent in pies.

Sweet Dumpling Small (about 1 pound), squat, ridged squash with green and gold striations on a cream background; flesh is golden, light textured; good for eating out of the skin.

Table Queen A named variety of acorn squash. It is dark green, deeply furrowed and acorn-shaped. The flesh is golden, dense and sweet but sometimes a little fibrous.

Triple Treat A 6 to 8 pound pumpkin. So named because it is good for eating out of the skin and for pies and because it’s hull-free seeds can be roasted.


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