Delicata Squash – A Treat for Fall and Winter Meals
Delicata squash. Have you seen these beauties at your local farmers market or food co-op?
In my younger years, I remember trying acorn squash smothered in brown sugar and butter and not liking it. That distaste stayed with me into my adulthood; I assumed squash was squash and that it all tasted the same.
Then about five years ago, after admiring how beautiful and colorful the winter squash varieties were, I decided to give squash another try. I did some reading on the different varieties of squash and picked up some delicata, banking on the often quoted promise on the internet that:
this is one of the tastier winter squashes, with creamy pulp that tastes a bit like corn and sweet potatoes.
Oh boy it was all that and more! I think that particular fall we ate so much squash we turned orange.
If you haven’t given this winter squash variety a try, what are you waiting for?
Delicata is a winter squash, a relative of the melon and cucumber. Winter squash comes in many different shapes and sizes and share a few traits such as a hard protective skin and a hollow cavity with seeds. Which by the way roasted squash seeds are amazing and easy to make. Each variety of winter squash has a slightly different taste and texture with the delicata being the tastiest.
Delicata squash contains carotenoids, plant nutrients, which are responsible for the yellow-orange flesh. These nutrients are also responsible for it’s health-promoting properties. It is also a good source of vitamins C, B1, B6 pantothenic acid, niacin, and potassium.
Peak season for winter squash is October and November
This is when their nutrient density is highest and the cost the lowest. Pick squash that is firm and dense for its size. Store in a cool dark place and it will remain fresh for three weeks or so.
To prepare delicata squash, cut it from tip to tip lengthwise with a sharp butcher knife. Clean the seeds out with a spoon. Lay the squash halves open side down in a baking dish and add ¼ cup of water. Bake at 400 degrees F for 25 minutes or until fork-tender. Delicata squash is so tasty all it needs is a little butter or ghee and some sea salt and it is amazing.
A serving of delicata squash is 3/4 c (85 g) = 30 calories, 0g fat, 7g carbs, 1g fiber, 1g protein.
Do you have a favorite delicata squash recipe? Please share it with us by sending an email to [email protected] (and add email graphic).
Read more by Vanessa Romero: https://www.carbsmart.com/category/our-writers/vanessa-romero