AH, the squash. That vegetable- well, technically fruit, but let’s be clear: the common use of “fruit” implies “Plant reproductive organs with internal seeds THAT ARE ALSO SWEET OR TART”; Which is why no one calls tomatoes, cucumbers, BEANS, or PEAS “fruit” in day-to-day conversation. Even I have limits to my pedantry. What were we talking about?
OH, yeah, Squash. A vegetable most likely to be forgotten in a list of popular fall foods, and a word most likely to become a meaningless series of letters after the seventh time you’ve read it. And a word with a ton of cool words tied to its history! For you etymology nerds out there: the verb “squash” and the vegetable “squash” actually come from two totally different word lineages (a similar issue is why the word “cleave” is now its own antonym.) The verb comes from Old French esquasser, derived from Latin exquasser, meaning “To shatter” (technically, it means “to weaken/shake thoroughly, thoroughout, or away.” But Latin’s a dick.) Meanwhile, the noun comes from the Narragansett (a nearly extinct language spoken by the Narragansett Native Americans of the Rhode Island region) askutasquash, meaning “vegetable or fruit eaten green/raw”. (Bonus word nerd fact: this is also the language we took “moose”, “powwow”, “papoose” and “succotash” from.)
And the people we took this land from! But aren’t we supposed to be talking about food?
YES, You’re right, caption Jon. Sorry, got carried away. We’ve no time for a complex dive into the etymology of foods and language absorptions…not today, at least. No, today we’re just going to give a brief primer on the various squashes of the coming fall months, and some fun ways to eat them!
Me and my Squash Buddies
(One last etymology thing: the GAME Squash got its name because it uses a softer ball than its previous form ‘rackets’, meaning the ball ‘squashed’ easier. So rackets players would ask “How about a game with the squash ball?”, and then that became the name of the game.)
Jesus, we are in a nerd fit today. I don’t understand it, so far today has been focused on a Yu-gi-oh Manga, Heroes of the Storm, and Game of Thrones, all clearly active and heavily masculine traits.
Pictured: Unbridled Machismo.
Anywho, squashes. Or gourds. Either works. TECHNICALLY-
Caption Jon? What are you doing here?
You’ve had like, six technical rants already. No more.
Aw, man. PLLEEEEAASE?
Listen to the italics, man
Alan! What are you doing here?
Reigning you in! You have made a mockery of this comedy site!
Fine. Alright. Just let me have this ONE.
I’ll be real quick, I promise!
Ugh. Fine. But I want at least 4 images to caption, so people can get some actual goddamn jokes.
YAY! As I was saying: Squashes and gourds both come from the same genus of plants, and in general usage, the distinction is that you don’t eat “gourds”, you use them for decoration or utensils. Sometimes, you cast them in movies!
What? He was in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.
So, back to the major varieties of squash. This is a remarkably complex area that I’m going to simplify because Caption Jon teamed up with Alan to bully me. SO LET’S TALK ABOUT EATING SOME SQUASH. (also, we’ve said “squash” 15 times now, so I hope it’s become as meaningless to you as it has to me.)
It makes the site metrics look greeeeat!
The basic, general rule of squash cooking is: You can eat the meat and the seeds, but not the skin. Basically every major strain works like this: Acorn, Spaghetti, Delicata, Pumpkin, Giuseppe, Butternut, Calabaza, DeLacey, Hubbard, and Kabocha. And I only made up two of those names. The made up names form a deep reference for those like myself who memorized the names of cartoon cats from 46-year-old movies.
But yes, meat and seeds. So let’s meet our lovely contestants on SQUISH THAT SQUASH.
My grandmother grew Acorn squash in her garden. I hated picking them. There’s no joke here, I just want my opinion on these things on the record.
Acorn Squash is the baby of the squash family. It’s most frequently encountered in recipes as a container: because of its small size, and the large gap removing the seeds leaves, it’s often stuffed or filled with some other ingredients. It’s perfectly fine to eat on its own, but edible bowls are also pretty sweet.
NOBODY BETTER LAY A FINGER ON MY BUTTERFINGER
Someone is going to say “Looks just like my dick.” To which I will say “God, I hope not.”
Butternut Squash is probably the go-to when people think of Squash, since we consider Pumpkins their own thing (check the pumpkin entry for a fun fact about that) as well as zucchini. It’s the quintessential Squash. In the Flavor Thesaurus, they just round Pumpkin into this. Come fall, it’s everywhere, making rich and sweet soups, sides, and meatless mains. Some places even put it on pizza.
That title is an old inside joke. Not the fac-
JON! WE GET IT! How many more squash are you going to go over??
Uhh, like 20 more, Alan. You and Caption Jon really lit a fire in me to methodically and deliberately talk about every genus and species of squash.
Shit, you get five more. And you do them next week.
But but but what about the Calabeza squash???? I had a pun that was perfect!
Next week! Jon finishes the much anticipated Squash list.
Stop while you are ahead Jon.
I want it noted that I was shortchanged. And that Alan used the wrong "Rein" when he and I punked Normail Jon.