Open Your Mind & Heart to Different Squash Varieties

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squash in a bowlThis week while looking through a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) share, I saw a different (to me) squash variety. I almost labeled it as an overgrown, unusable squash. Boy, was I wrong. Had I’d been living in COVID isolation so long that I forgot that many varieties of squash exist? Yes!!

Now, don’t you do the same. I’m here to tell you that many varieties of squash exist. Because summer squash is abundant this time of year, we will concentrate on those for this article. (But don’t stick your nose up at winter squash when they come to market).

Summer squash appears in many different fruit shapes and colors:

  • Scalloped or Patty Pan–round and flattened like a plate with scalloped edges
  • Constricted neck–the stem end is smaller than the blossom end
  • Cylindrical to club-shaped

round squash variety

You can find both open-pollinated (heirloom) varieties and hybrid varieties. Here are some examples of the many varieties of summer squash:

  • Zucchini (open-pollinated)
    • Black Beauty
    • Cocozelle
    • Black zucchini
  • Zucchini (hybrid)
    • Spineless Beauty
  • Yellow Crookneck
  • Yellow Straightneck
  • Scallop
    • Peter Pan
    • Sunburst
  • Other
    • Gourmet Globe

The beauty of buying from a local producer is that you as a consumer can ask questions. I thank the producer that set me straight and told me about the variety they had grown with how to prepare it. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and try something new. It may lead to a new favorite dish!

variety of squash