Red kuri squash (also referred to as kari squash), is a brightly colored orange winter squash. It looks like a small teardrop shaped pumpkin without the thick ridges. It is part of the Hokkaido pumpkin family. If you're wondering how to do holiday baking with fresh pumpkin, this is for you!
This year I've fallen in love with red kuri squash. First, its flavor is incredible. The flesh of this squash is slightly sweet with a hint of rich nuttiness, and the texture is rich and smooth. I have a roulette issue when buying pumpkins and winter squash –often I get one that's incredible and yet other times I choose a squash that is bland and not moist enough. Although I'm fairly experienced at choosing (and growing) produce (my parents had a vegetable garden in the backyard during my childhood –talk about farm to table!), I still haven't perfected the process of selecting the ideal winter squash or pumpkin.
Red kuri squash, however, is a game changer. I haven't been disappointed yet, they're perfect!
In addition to its wonderful flavor, I find the color of red kuri squash very pleasing. Its beautiful bright orange skin becomes soft when cooked and I blend it into all of my pumpkin pies, muffins, and breads right along with the meaty flesh inside. This winter squash is perfect for fall baking. Now, all of my holiday baked goods have a gorgeous, vibrant orange hue.
I haven't tried growing red kuri squash yet. If you do decide to, here's what Wikipedia says:
This hardy squash grows to maturity in full sun and is drought tolerant. Each vine produces multiple teardrop-shaped fruits, usually three. The squash matures about ninety days after blooming.
Red kuri squash is my go to for my Thanksgiving baking recipes. It's also fantastic in soups as well as sautéed and steamed. Further, red kuri is incredible with holiday stuffing –you can use it in place of the acorn squash in my stuffed squash recipe.
Of course, all winter squash and pumpkins are very healthy, and red kuri is no exception. Red kuri squash is a fantastic source of fiber. It also contains a good amount of vitamin A and vitamin C, beta carotene, B vitamins, calcium, and potassium. If you need to count calories, red kuri is low in calories, and full of good nutrients, making it a win-win food all around.