September 7th is Acorn Squash DayWith the cooler temperatures we are experiencing in Northeast Wisconsin, it feels like fall is just around the corner. Fall makes me think of leaves turning colors, football and fall produce including winter squash. Acorn squash is considered a winter squash. This dark green squash has an acorn like shape, hence its name. It comes in a variety of colors including yellow, dark green, tan and orange.
Acorn squash is not as rich in beta-carotene as other winter varieties, acorn squash is an excellent source of dietary fiber and contains vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium and manganese plus a substantial amount of potassium.
Select squash that are dull and heavy for their size. Avoid those with soft spots or cracks.
When cooked its yellow-orange colored flesh offers a mildly sweet and nutty flavor with a somewhat dry texture. Its rind is thin yet hardy and has deep, characteristic ridges which are often times capped with a splash of orange, considered a sign of maturity.
Acorn squash are a hard-skinned, winter variety squash. They may be peeled, but are most often cooked with their skin-on. Stuff and bake halved squash with meats, cheese, grains or other vegetables. Add cooked squash to soups, stews, curries, risotto and pasta. Puree and use in quick breads, cakes and pies. Its sweet flavor pairs well with brown sugar, maple syrup, sage, rosemary, robust cheeses, curry, pecans, dried cranberries, cilantro and apple.
Acorn squash should be stored in a cool, dry place away from extreme temperatures. It will stay good for three months.