Your landlord’s finally turned the heat on, you’ve un-space bagged your sweaters and pulled your Uggs from underneath the bed, where they’ve been slumbering since spring. All that’s left to do is sharpen your knives and get to know fall’s most versatile crop: gourds!
As the gourd that started it all, pumpkin is well-rounded with a soft texture and natural sweetness, so it’s perfect in sweet as well as savory recipes. There’s a dizzying variety out there, but generally speaking, the smaller varieties make for the best eating – save the big guys for Halloween. Bonus: Roast up a batch of the seeds for a crunchy, toasty treat to munch on during your next scary movie binge. Try it in our Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe!
A super-versatile variety of squash, butternut sports firm, pale orange flesh with a mild flavor. We love it in ravioli, sauces, soups, and even chili. Because of its widespread popularity, you can find it pre-prepped both in the produce and freezer aisle, so you can easily add it to your fall rotation. Try this squash in our Butternut Squash Risotto recipe!
This squash looks just like a large green acorn, and its hard shell and round shape makes it notoriously tricky to prep. Once you do, though, you’ll be rewarded with golden-hued flesh and a subtle sweetness. Its shape and size makes them perfect for halving and stuffing with rice and meat, then baking for a complete meal. They’re also great sliced into half-moons and drizzling with maple syrup before roasting for a sweet side dish. Try it in our Bone-in Pork Chop with Candied Walnut Butter recipe!
If you’ve noticed Delicata to be a newer addition to your produce aisle, you’d be right! It all but disappeared after the Great Depression due to growing issues and was only recently revived by researchers at Cornell University. Much like its name suggests, Delicata has a thin, edible skin and slender shape. You’ll know it by its signature cream and green stripes, and will be happy to find that it’s super versatile in savory cooking. Whether sliced into rounds and sautéed or thinly ribboned and tossed into hearty fall salads, it’s thin skin means it’s easy to enjoy with minimal prep.
Red Kuri Squash
Another newer addition, Red Kuri is popping up in more fall produce displays and pumpkin patches in recent years. Japanese for ‘Chestnut’, Red Kuri’s small size and bulbous shape has earned it the title of Onion Squash in the U.K. It can be used in savory and sweet recipes much like pumpkin, and its small size makes it much more manageable to work with. Try it in cake, bread or even in an unexpected dish, like a stir fry!