Saturday, September 26, 2009

What does a Butternut or Acorn Squash look like?

It dawned on me that as I post squash recipes, I should back up and clarify what kind of squash you want to pick up at your local market. Many markets sell squash already cut-up, but it’s much less expensive, and the squash will be fresher if you purchase the whole thing, peel and scoop the seeds yourself.

This is an acorn squash, which if you have a good imagination looks kind of like an acorn. To prep this one, you simply cut it in half, scoop the seeds out and it’s ready to be drizzled with a little olive oil and go in the oven! The skin cooks while it’s roasting and I usually eat it, but my kids want nothing to do with skin, so after it comes out of the oven, let it cool down a little bit and then simply peel the skin off. It should come off very easily after cooking.

This is a butternut squash. It has a sweet taste, similar to pumpkin. For those wondering about butternut's nutritional value: it is a great source of fiber, vitamins A and C, magnesium, and potassium. So, kid-pleasing and good for you, a bonus. (If you’re going to buy one of these two squashes already peeled and cut, this would be the one to go for since it takes a little more effort...) To prep this one, first I cut it in half, and then I scooped out the seeds. Then I carefully held the squash and used a carrot peeler to whisk off the skin. Once you do that you can chop it any size and you’re good to go!

The Legos have lost their allure, but I’ll aim to post two more squash recipes: stuffed (pictured above) and maple roasted later on this afternoon. Until then, enjoy this gorgeous Fall day!

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