I am really excited about the Upper Ground Sweet Potato squash that I am growing this year. I am hoping this will be my first year successfully growing a winter squash. We always lose them due to drought, squash bugs, and/or disease. But this variety of winter squash is reportedly very hardy and said to survive such things. Squashes are impressive plants, and this one is no exception. I love its giant heart shaped leaves.
But this giant plant makes giant squashes. I’ve heard they can grow up to 40 pounds! Holy crap, what am I going to do with that?
Not all winter squashes are that large, but many are very tough to cut. That toughness is why we can store these squashes for several months, but it also means working with winter squash can be intimidating. It is definitely worth the effort, though.
Tips for cooking with winter squash
- Use a sharp knife. Get a knife sharpener if you need to because you won’t get through a thick winter squash skin with a dull knife.
- You can use an ice cream scoop to remove the seeds. It’s a bit larger than a spoon for collecting the seeds and the edges are sharper to help cut through the stringy bits.
- Don’t toss those seeds! Save them! Get any bits of squash meat off of them, some strings are okay, and lay them out to dry. Store the dried seeds in a paper envelope and save them for next spring.
- The skin is very tough. To remove it, make sure you choose a sharp knife or heavy duty peeler.
- If you don’t plan to save the seeds, you can roast or microwave the squash before cutting and peeling.
- It’s okay to use a different winter squash than is called for in the recipe. There are tons of different varieties of winter squash and each will taste a little different. Acorn, butternut, and delicata are the sweetest ones. Others can by sweet or dry depending on the variety.
The flavor of garden raised winter squash is fantastic in sweet and savory dishes. These vegetables are really versatile in recipes, so I’ve rounded up these great recipes from some fellow homesteading and green-living bloggers.
Lasagna and Noodles
More Winter Squash Round Ups
Ready to grow your own winter squash? Read my Winter Squash Beginners Guide