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In Praise of Kabocha Squash

In Praise of Kabocha Squash
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I first tasted Kabocha Squash about six years ago, when I lived in California. It’s practically a fall and winter staple food there, and in the test kitchens at Sunset magazine, where I worked at the time, we came up with all manner of ways to stew, roast, and steam it.

A whole kabocha

Kabocha is a winter squash originally from Japan, which explains why it first made inroads on the West Coast and then made its way east. I love it for its sweet, nutty flavor and silky texture. In fact, I find it even smoother than acorn or butternut squashes, particularly when roasted. So I’m happy to see it showing up in more and more supermarkets (I bought mine at a Whole Foods outside of Boston).

And roasting is just about my favorite way to prepare kabocha: done simply with butter, brown sugar, and my apple butter. Here’s how.

First, cut the squash in halve, scoop out the seeds, and then cut each half into four wedges.

Dot each wedge with about 1 teaspoon salted butter, 1 teaspoon brown sugar, and about 1 tablespoon apple butter.

Bake at 375° until tender and lightly browned at the edges, 30 to 35 minutes.


Amy Traverso


Amy Traverso


Senior lifestyle editor Amy Traverso oversees Yankee's Food and Home & Garden departments and contributes articles to the magazine. Amy book, The Apple Lover's Cookbook (W.W. Norton), won an International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) cookbook award for the category American. Follow !
Updated Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

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One Response to In Praise of Kabocha Squash

  1. Mary Elizabeth Nordstrom December 4, 2011 at 10:36 pm #

    This is the kind of simple recipe I want to see more often! My style of cooking includes doing a single serving of salmon in the microwave, skin side up for 2.20 minutes. If not quite done, I turn it over and give it a few more seconds ad lib. Cover with paper towel or your choice of cover to save from cleaning microwave! Salmon in a bed of lettuce with this wedge of squash on the side sounds good to me! Balsamic vinegar and oil on the lettuce.

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