MIRANDA ANSPACH: Coming into fall with winter squash

Print Article

Fall is officially here with its colder days and longer nights. Fall brings with it the harvest of squash, a welcomed gift from the summer’s work that has ended.

Along with its abundance and affordability, winter squash offer many health benefits. They are rich in vitamin A and carotenoids which have been shown to boost immunity, promote healthy skin and promote eye health. Winter squash are also considered good sources of fiber.

Winter squash comes in a variety of types, colors, and tastes. Described here are the common squash found in stores and how to prepare them.

Acorn squash are shaped like acorns, hence the name. They are most commonly found with dark green outer skins but can come in yellow, tan or orange. The flesh inside is a light orange color. The flavor is mild, with a sweet subtle nutty flavor. Choose one that is firm on the outside. You can bake, roast, steam or microwave acorn squash.

Buttercup squash are dark green, cup-shaped squash. The flesh inside is bright orange color. It has a distinguishable round ridge on its bottom. Choose a squash that is heavy for its size. The flavor of buttercup squash is sweet and creamy. It can be considered one of the sweeter winter squash. It is best to steam or bake buttercup squash.

Butternut squash are tan and shaped like bowling pins. The flesh is bright orange. This is the sweetest of the winter squash. They can be roasted or sautéed. They are also very suitable for making into a puree or soup.

Hubbard squash are lesser known. They are commonly found with orange skin but can also be green, gray or blue. Hubbard squash have a sweet flavor similar to pumpkin. It can be used in baking, cooking and even used in pie.

Spaghetti squash are long and shaped like cylinders. They have a pale exterior that can range from cream to yellow in color. The flesh, when cooked, develops into strands that are similar in looks to spaghetti, in which it gets its name. Although it looks like spaghetti, the taste is different. Its flavor is mild and it has a chewy, tender texture. It can be roasted or steamed. The strands can be scraped out and used in place of pasta with marinara or pesto.

Winter squash is available now and into the winter months. You can find them at the grocery store, at local farmer’s markets, or perhaps, in families and friends’ backyard gardens. Cooked squash can be incorporated into sauces, soups, stir fry or pasta dishes.

Now is a great time to start trying the varieties of squash. You may only like one type, or like them all. Either way, these fall delicatessens will add flavor and health benefits to your plate.

• • •

Miranda Anspach is a senior in the University of Idaho Coordinated Program in Dietetics.

Print Article

Read More Healthy Community

HOLLY CARLING: Weight loss obstacle: Hormonal imbalance

June 20, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press PAID CONTENT So many people today want to lose weight. Many know they’re not eating the right things and don’t want anyone telling them what to eat. Others eat a “clean” diet — a diet that omits p...

Comments

Read More

DR. WAYNE M. FICHTER: Top three energy zappers

June 20, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press PAID CONTENT Do you feel exhausted before the day even starts? The following daily habits may be draining your energy reserves. In today’s society we are told to rest, relax and do the best we can...

Comments

Read More

GEORGE BALLING: The state of rosé

June 20, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press PAID CONTENT When we opened the dinner party late in 2007, dry rosé nearly didn’t exist in the market here in North Idaho. We were familiar with the wine category before we moved here to open the ...

Comments

Read More

HOLLY CARLING: Help for chronic fatigue

June 13, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press PAID CONTENT Chronic fatigue syndrome was defined as a disease in the 1990s, yet there is no test to confirm it, no mutually agreed upon set of symptoms and no medically defined cure. If it was “j...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 664-8176
215 N. Second St
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814

©2018 The Coeur d'Alene Press Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X