The Flavors of Summer
Each summer of our lives imparts its own flavors especially as it recedes into memory. Nothing captures the flavor that lives-on like the flavors of summer squash. Summer squash is a member of the Cucurbita plant family that produce male and female flowers. Female flowers produce the fruit and the male flowers produce pollen. And its skin is uniquely concentrated in nutrients.
Summer squash is a vegetable with remarkable nutrient richness that spans all nutrient categories: vitamins, minerals, macronutrients (like fiber and protein) as well as phytonutrients like carotenoids. The vegetable is high in vitamins A, B6, and C, folate, fiber, riboflavin, phosphorus, and potassium. Its mineral content is rich, supplying copper, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, and iron.
Sauteed, grilled, steamed or raw are the favored culinary preparations. Sautéed squash with butter and sweet onions is a classic. Ratatouille is another. Squash noodles, shaved squash, charred squash, squash fritters and stuffed squash are summer standards that live on as our memory recedes.
At Versailles Farms we grow the Spineless Perfection variety of green summer squash. We harvest them before maturity, before seeds are formed, to lock-in their succulent tenderness.
Native to the Americas, squash is one of the Three Sisters agricultural system -beans, corn & squash- introduced to the Pilgrims in Plymouth by the Patuxet Indians at the first Thanksgiving. These three crops allowed most Native American tribes to thrive on a plant-based diet.