Summer Squash

Summer squash is a versatile vegetable that belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family, alongside cucumbers, melons, and pumpkins. These tender squash varieties are harvested during their immature growth stage, usually in the warmer months, giving them the name "summer squash." Common varieties include zucchini, yellow squash, and pattypan squash, which offer subtle differences in taste and appearance but can all be cooked similarly. Perfect for home cooks and gardeners, summer squash is easy to grow, low in calories, and high in essential nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium. It lends itself well to various cooking techniques, including grilling, roasting, steaming, and sautéing. Simply prepared, summer squash is a tasty addition to salads, stir-fries, and pasta dishes, while more elaborate recipes can transform it into bread, fritters, or a key component in a hearty casserole.
CAL / 100G
summer squash
Summer Squash FAQ
Summer squash is a wonderfully versatile vegetable, but many people get caught up in not knowing how to properly select, prepare, and cook it. The most common mistake is choosing a squash with a hard and thick skin which indicates it's overripe and will be bitter to taste. Instead, select ones that are small to medium sized, with glossy, soft skin. Another common blunder is not taking the high water content of the squash into account. This can result in a watery, mushy dish, especially when baking or sautéing. To prevent this, drain or pat dry the squash after you have cut it and before you start cooking. It is also okay to eat summer squash raw - it is light, crisp, and refreshing, perfect for salads and raw veggie platters. Adding to things many are unaware of, the entire squash can be eaten, including the soft seeds and skin. Finally, don’t forget about varieties beyond zucchini. Yellow and pattypan squash are also wonderful cooked or raw.
How do I choose the best summer squash?
Do I need to peel summer squash before cooking?
Can summer squash be eaten raw?
What can I do to prevent my squash dish from getting too watery?
How can I remove bitterness from summer squash?
How to get the most flavor out of my Summer squash?
What are other varieties of Summer squash beyond zucchini?
Why does my summer squash taste bitter?
Do you need to deseed summer squash?
Should summer squash be refrigerated?
Expiration & Storage Tips
When does summer squash expire?
Summer squash typically lasts for about 1 week in the refrigerator after you bring it home from the grocery store. However, if you've bought it uncut and it's still fresh, it can last for about 2 weeks. Once the squash has been cut, it will last for about 1 to 2 days in the fridge. If cooked, then summer squash can stay good for 3 to 5 days when properly stored in the refrigerator. Frozen summer squash can last up to 8 months in the freezer.
How do you tell if summer squash is bad?
You can tell if summer squash has gone bad if it has visible mold, a slimy texture, or intense discoloration. If the skin is wrinkling or shriveling, or if dark spots appear, then it is time to toss it. If the smell is off or sour, that too is an indication that the squash is no longer good.
Tips for storing summer squash to extend shelf life
• Keep your squash in a cool, dark place - if you have a pantry, that's a great spot! • Don't wash squash before storing. Wetness encourages spoiling. Wash just before cooking. • Keep summer squash in the crisper of your refrigerator. If you've got them sealed in a bag, make sure to poke a few holes to allow circulation. • If you want to freeze squash, wash and slice them. Blanch the rounds for about 3 minutes, then quickly cool in ice water. After draining, place the pieces on a baking sheet and freeze them solid. Afterwards, they can be placed in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags. • To defrost, do not thaw! Add them directly from the freezer to the meal you're cooking.
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Health Info
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