How do you know when a crookneck squash is ripe?
Measure the squash to determine maturity. Pick yellow straight and crookneck squash when the fruit reaches a 4- to 7-inch length but while the skin is still tender and easily pierced by a fingernail. Grasp the squash in one hand and gently lift it so the fruit stem is visible.
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Yellow crookneck squash peaks during the summer months, but you can enjoy the freshness of the vegetable throughout the entire year by freezing it. ... Freezing squash requires that you blanch it first so that it retains its bright color and firm texture.
You can eat the skin, so there's no need to peel it. Simply halve it, scoop out the seeds and chop it into chunks, then roast it and add it to a warm winter salad or throw it into curries, stews or soups.
Organic insecticidal soap works great for killing squash bugs and nymphs. You can also mix your own homemade spray using 1 tsp mild liquid soap to 1 liter of water (be sure to always spot-test sprays before using them on any plant). The these organic sprays will kill most of the squash bugs on contact.
The taste of squash pairs nicely with the mild flavor of pasta, as well. Roast butternut or acorn squash, cut it into cubes and toss it with cooked pasta, sautéed garlic and a drizzle of olive oil. Cut zucchini into ribbons and pair it with cooked whole-wheat linguine, diced onions and grape tomatoes.
You can peel and cube the squash a few days in advance and refrigerate in airtight container until ready to use. You can also make the entire recipe a day in advance and reheat it before serving. Cook the squash slightly al dante the first day, about 20 minutes.
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