Friday, January 7, 2011

Kabocha with Clothes On

Amazing!  Who knew there were squashes whose peels you could eat!  Apparently people eat unpeeled kabocha squash all the time!  I love it when I emerge from the culinary dark, finally to see something that others have known for millennia.  Here's how you do it.

Slice off the stems and blossom ends. Cut off any bumps or damaged spots, and remove any divots.

Then cut the squash in half.  Be careful.  If you have trouble getting the knife through, take the squash to a concrete area and bang it to complete the split.

Use your trusty serrated ice cream scoop to remove the seeds. Cut squash into dice (about 3/4 inch) and toss in a bowl with 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Spread on a Silpat-lined cookie sheet and sprinkle the dices with salt and pepper.

Roast at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring once at midpoint.   The squash will begin to caramelize, and will taste exquisitely sweet and dense.

Other squash varieties whose skins are edible are Delicata and acorn.  But you have to make sure the squash is fairly fresh.  Apparently the skin grows thicker throughout the winter as the squash loses moisture.

To test for peel edibility, you could cut a cube and microwave it to see if the skin goes soft.

Our venerable CSA farmer grows umpteen varieties of squash and held a squash tasting that I was not able to attend.  Perhaps he mentioned this wondrous quality of certain squashes!  It certainly speeds the preparation process, and provides an easier source of cubed squash to freeze or roast!

1 comment:

  1. Kabocha has been my go-to squash this winter - how great is that edible skin? Coincidentally, I'm planning to post a steamed kabocha squash recipe later today - stay tuned :)