“Pumpkin or Squash?”

When I was five I learned a riddle which made adults laugh. “How do you turn a pumpkin into a squash?” “Throw it up in the air and it will come down squash all right.” I really didn’t understand the joke, but I repeated it frequently enjoying the laughter.

In addition to being a banner year for apples, squash and pumpkins have been abundant this fall. Above from top clockwise: sugar pumpkin, butternut squash, butterkin squash and acorn squash. The butterkin is a cross of a pumpkin and butternut squash. I don’t know why it gets to keep the name squash. It could be a squashkin. I guess it doesn’t sound as marketable. Butterkin sounds rather endearing. Missing is the recently eaten spaghetti squash, so called because when cooked its inside comes out in strands.

While there are many ways to cook them, I have been using the air fryer for them recently. I cook the whole spaghetti squash, with a few fork holes for steam to release, in the fryer, turning it half way through. Once cooked and cooled the insides come out easily. The butternut, peeled, cut into little chunks with a little maple syrup added, roasts to perfection in the air fryer. The acorn works after being cut in half. I have yet to tackle either the pumpkin or butterkin. The regular oven will probably be best.

Living here and getting the CSA(community supported agriculture) has introduced me to a variety of new squash and pumpkins. And I finally understand the riddle. Sadly my grandchildren are old enough to groan when I ask it.

20 thoughts on ““Pumpkin or Squash?”

  1. I remember spaghetti squash appearing in our shops around London some decades ago, but I haven’t seen any for a while. (Maybe because I’m not looking? Or because there is less interest out here in the Fens?) Butternut squash and sweet potato are always on offer in the supermarkets now, and of course pumpkins in season.
    Pumpkin pie hasn’t really caught on in my circles though. I seemed to me to taste of nothing much other than sugar and the spices you put in it. Bach in the decades when we were carving out pumpkins for halloween, I used to curry the innards. My daughter went through a vegetarian phase in her late teens and twenties, so it was actually a useful ingredient, rather than something i felt should be eaten rather than thrown away.


  2. Pumpkins are pumpkins here regardless of size shape or colour…..squash are those tiny yellow round things with scalloped edges that look like they’ve grown to shape in patty tins😊. My favourite – the only one I cook – is butternut…..made into soup, it’s delish!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Butterkin does sound rather lovely. Do they taste different from each other? I tend only to use butternut squash but on the occasions I’ve cooked pumpkin it tastes much the same.


      1. Do let me know! Yes, I have read Haven. I had a quick look to see if your email address was available but I can’t see anything so I’ll reply on the Haven thread. It may be a day or so as I’ve just got home from a few days away so I’m catching up on things.


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