I was given a kabocha squash. I love squash. But, I’ve never prepared kabocha before. I didn’t know what to do with it.
A Greenish Orange Squash
Kabocha is round like a small pumpkin. It has a dark green skin with orange flecks. The fruit is a little darker than pumpkin and butternut. There is a large hole in the middle filled with are a ton of seeds and stingy guts. The fruit is not very thick, at least it wasn’t in this one. It was maybe a quarter of an inch to a half inch thick.
I decided to steam it in the microwave like I do butternut squash. Cooking winter squash in the microwave is easy.
How to Prepare Kabocha Squash
1. Cut the squash in half or in chunks. DO NOT COOK IT WHOLE IN THE MICROWAVE. It will explode.
2. Place pieces in a microwave safe container with a little water in the bottom.
3. Cover with a lid, but leave an opening for the steam to release.
4. Microwave on high for 7-10 minutes depending on your microwave’s wattage. I have a 1250w microwave, so less time is needed.
5. Let cool for 10-15 minutes or when cool to the touch.
6. Peel away the skin or scoop/scrape out fruit with a fork.
I’ve cooked several butternut squashes this way. It is easy to work with and takes less time that the oven.
Kabocha squash is more difficult to prepare. The skin is thick and hard. I tried one knife, then another. No luck. I am not that strong and arthritis makes me leery to wield the larger knives.
I put the squash on a plate and microwaved it for 25 seconds. The skin was softened enough that I was able to stab a butcher knife into it.
Once I cleaned out the guts, I rinsed it off, and prepared it the same way as butternut squash. I microwaved it for 6 minutes since the pieces are much thinner than butternut.
It Tasted A Lot Like Acorn Squash
It cooked through very well. However, the yield was really small. I got less than a half of cup of fruit for my effort. After all my effort removing the skin, my cousin informed me most people don’t peel kabocha. They eat it skin and all like zucchini or patty pan. Well, live and learn!
Kabocha has an earthy flavor like acorn squash. Where butternut and pumpkin are sweet, the kabocha is more tangy.
I was told that kabocha works great in stew. Maybe I’ll try it that way next time. If I can get a knife through the skin, that is!
If you eat kabocha, how do you like it prepared?