Getting to know Hubbard squash

Hubbard squash are those big, Beluga-shaped members of the 'Cucurbita' family

Credit: Sharon Hanna

Hubbard squash are those big, Beluga-shaped members of the Cucurbita family. These are known as “winter” squash as opposed to summer squash

Summer squash include zucchini, crookneck, marrows, romanesco, etc., and have soft skin. Winter squash take longer to mature, have hard insides and skin, keep a long time and are usually harvested in late summer/early fall. Most winter squash are ‘ramblers,’ with the exception of a few modified bush types; ‘Delicata’, for example.

Hubbard has blue/green skin and orange flesh; pictured is an infant Hubbard photographed August 7. This baby will weigh 10–15 pounds or more at maturity. All the winter squash at West Creek were direct-sown in big mounds of soil in early June.

Squash keeps well into spring if cured and stored properly. The West Coast Seeds catalogue explains how to do that very well, and it’s also available online.

Mary Ballon always said to put a few drops of bleach in a cup of water, and wipe the hard skin of the squash lightly, to keep any naughty bacteria on the surface from beginning the rotting process.

Cooking tips for Hubbard squash

There are lots of great ways to use this nutritious veggie—soup with kale and white beans, squash and Italian sausage risotto, steamed with butter and a grinding of nutmeg, or baked in the oven with maple syrup