What is it?
Acorn squash is a hard-shelled winter sqaush shaped like its namesake nut. It may have white-gold, warm orange, or dark green skin, but all have the same golden flesh inside. A great choice for baking, the flesh cooks up dry and sweet, with a definable but pleasant texture.
1 squash yields 2 substantial side-dish servings
Don’t have it?
Substitute delicata squash, which are similarly sized and shaped.
How to choose:
Choose squash that feel heavy for their size; those that don’t feel heavy probably have been sitting around for a while and have lost moisture. Although acorn squash is grown year-round, peak season is October through March, when it has been cold-weather harvested and stored in the cold to develop its sugars.
How to prep:
Acorn squash is so delicious that it doesn’t need much fussing with, which is a good thing, because that ridged surface is a real drag to peel. So keep it simple: trim the tip and the root end just enough so the squash can stand upright. Cut it in half and remove any seeds and extra fibers with a sturdy spoon. Rub the flesh with butter, season with salt and pepper or a sprinkling of brown sugar or maple syrup, and bake, cut side up, until tender. You can also cut the squash into rings and bake or roast those.
How to store:
This hard-skinned squash will keep for weeks in a cool, dark, well ventilated area.
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