5 Interesting Winter Squash Varieties
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Squash is a versatile vegetable that is available in several different varieties across the world. Different varieties of squash are grown in different seasons, and their characteristics differ according to weather and soil. Squashes differ from gourds in various ways. While squashes are widely grown for consumption, gourds are mostly grown for decorative purposes in several parts of the world. Although one can find several Indian dishes made out of bottle gourd and betel gourd, they are essentially a variety of squash. One of the famous and mostly used squash varieties is Winter Squash.

Winter squash is especially used in making several kinds of winter delicacies across the world. 

They are a variety of hearty, mature squash harvested in the fall. Winter squashes are characterised  by thick, hard skin and sweet, dense flesh, and popular types include butternut, acorn, and kabocha. These versatile and nutritious vegetables are often used in soups, stews, roasts, or as standalone dishes. Winter squash boasts a rich flavour profile, ranging from mildly sweet to nutty, making it a staple ingredient in comforting winter recipes.

Today, we will explore 5 different types of winter squashes and how they are used all over the world in winter cuisine.

1. Acorn Squash

Looking like a giant acorn, this squash is a common crop in North America. The flesh of this squash from the inside is yellow or orange, with a mild, slightly sweet flavour. This plant requires a warm temperature to grow, so it's mostly grown around summer and harvested during autumn and winter. Although it's not common in India, its popularity among Indian home gardeners has started growing in the entire country. Acorn squash is used in making various delectable dishes such as stuffed and roasted acorn squash which is a part of winter festive dishes in America.

2. Butternut Squash

It is a widely loved squash, renowned for its mildly sweet and nutty flavour, which gained popularity in India in recent years due to its availability in supermarkets. This squash is native to America and grows in warm weather. Loaded with nutrients essential for thriving in the winter chill, Butternut squash provides a wholesome experience with every meal. Butternut squash is also versatile and can be used to cook sweet and savoury dishes. Some popular dishes made out of butternut squash are Butternut Squash Pie, Mashed Butternut Squash, and Butternut Squash Risotto.

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3. Spaghetti Squash

Just like its name, the meat of this squash, when tore, appears like different strands of spaghetti. This makes it an interesting alternative to pasta. The taste of this quash is not as sweet as other winter squashes, but it's tender, and it gives off a stringy texture when cooked.It grows largely in America and spread across the world through culinary influences.

4. Pumpkin

A widely used squash in Indian households, pumpkin is a winter squash from the gourd family and is widely grown all across the world. It has an earthy flavour and is fibrous, which makes it a good vegetable for winter. It is widely accepted in India and used in making several kinds of soups, sweets, and savoury dishes.

5. Lauki

Also known as Long Indian Squash has a tender inside and has a slightly sweet flavour, which makes them a popular ingredient in indian dishes. One of the popular dishes made out of lauki is lauki ki sabzi. Along with this, it is widely used to make desserts and soups. It is widely grown in subtropical regions and is available for consumption all year.

Apart from these squashes, there are several other varieties of them waiting to be explored. This world of squashes can never be explained to its fullness. Therefore, keep reading such articles on our website to know more about what every vegetable has to offer.