Buttercup Squash


Buttercup squash is a winter squash belonging to the family Cucurbitaceae. Not to be confused with its cousin the butternut squash, the squat green buttercup takes its name from its shape, which some say resembles an upside-down acorn with an undersized cap.


Other names: Winter squash
Translations: Gundega Skvošs, Βατράχιο Squash, Buttercup Skvošo, الحوذان الاسكواش, Leinikki Squash, バタースカッシュ, 미나리 스쿼시, Kẹo có bơ Squash, Jaskier Squash, Лютик Сквош, बटरकप स्क्वैश, דובשנית סקווש, Лютик Сквош, Buttercup squash, 巴特卡普壁球, Љути Сквош, Buttercup esquaix, Лютиче скуош

Physical Description

The average buttercup squash is about 7 inches (17.5 centimeters) in diameter and weighs approximately 3 pounds (1.4 kilograms), though some individual specimens may grow to be over 5 pounds (2.7 kilograms).

Colors: rind is dark green striated with silvery gray lines, flesh is dark yellow-orange

Tasting Notes

Flavors: Sweet, nutty
Mouthfeel: Creamy
Food complements: Butter, Brown sugar, Cinnamon, Maple syrup
Substitutes: Butternut squash, Pumpkin, Delicata squash, Sweet potato

Selecting and Buying

Seasonality: january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, opctober, november, december
Peak: september, opctober, november, december
Buying: When purchasing a buttercup squash, select a squash that feels heavy for its size, is free from soft spots and blemishes, and has a rind that is deeply colored. Avoid any squash that has soft, wrinkled, or moldy spots.
Procuring: Buttercup squash is not hard to cultivate in the home garden. It prefers rich, well-drained soil and full sun. Pests such as bugs and vine borers can pose a serious threat and must be managed to ensure a successful crop. Adult bugs and egg clusters can be handpicked from the plants, and insecticides may be judiciously applied. As with other winter squash, buttercup squash should be allowed to mature on the vine. It is considered ripe when the skin has a matte appearance and is too hard to be easily pierced with a fingernail. Leave a 1 to 2 inch (2.5 to 5 centimeter) stub of stem when cutting from the vine, to provide for longer storage.

Preparation and Use

Steaming and baking are recommended because it brings out the sweetness and adds moisture to the flesh.

Peeling the buttercup squash is difficult but, happily, avoidable. To cook without peeling, simply wash the squash well, rinse, and dry. Split the squash in half lengthwise, through the stem. Using a large spoon, scrape out the seeds and the stringy pulp from the seed cavity. Pour about ½ cup (120 ml) of water into a baking dish with sides. Lay squash halves, cut-side down, in the dish. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for about 30 minutes or until tender.

To use the flesh in soups, muffins, pies, or to serve as a puree on its own, simply scoop out of the rind using a spoon.

Conserving and Storing

Buttercup squash can be stored in a cool, dry place for several months.
Once cut, the buttercup squash may be stored in a resealable plastic bag in the refrigerator for three or four days.
Cooked squash can be frozen for up to three months in a tightly sealed container.



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