Zucchini vs Squash
During the fall, home gardeners and local farmers alike start to bring in their crops. Soon store shelves and kitchens are full of fresh produce and the delicious smells of baking. Many crops come in during the fall, including tomatoes, beans, carrots, potatoes, zucchini, and squash. Each grows in a different way and creates different types of dishes. Since zucchini and squash are often thought to be very similar, exploring the differences between zucchini and squash will help gardeners and cooks alike use them to their greatest extent.
Taxonomy of Zucchini and Squash
Both zucchini and squash belong to the genus Cucurbita though they are members of different species.
Zucchini ‘“ is of the species pepo.
Squash ‘“ is of the species maxima, mixta, moschata, and pepo.
History of Zucchini and Squash
Zucchini ‘“ being part of the squash family, it was first cultivated by native people in North America. It was brought to Europe by returnees and extensively cultivated in Italy, where it got its name. Eventually the plant was reintroduced in America with incredible popularity.
Squash ‘“ was part of the ‘Three Sisters’ of traditional Native American agriculture (the other two parts being beans and corn). It was quickly adopted by early settlers because of its easy storage during the cold winter months.
Cultivation of Zucchini and Squash
Zucchini ‘“ is typically called summer squash because it is harvested in August and September. During the spring and summer it grows on vines. These vines produce large, brightly colored flowers that yield zucchini, technically a fruit because it stores the seeds of the plant.
Squash ‘“ in its most popular form of the pumpkin, is harvested late in the year, October or November. Prior to that it grows in the same manner as zucchini, though it ripens longer and vine and grows to a larger size.
Cooking Zucchini and Squash
Zucchini ‘“ is an extremely flavorful vegetable that can be lightly sautÃ©ed and eaten. It can also be cooked in almost any other manner, either alone or with other vegetables. It is a key ingredient in risotto and is very popular in zucchini bread and muffins.
Squash ‘“ is also able to be prepared in a variety of ways. It is easy to store simply by keeping it in a cool dry place until you are ready to eat it. You can roast squash, puree it for soup, or remove the seeds and press them for oil. It is also a very versatile plant.
1.Zucchini and squash are both members of the same genus.
2.Both zucchini and squash were originally grown in North America but zucchini was then intensively cultivated in Italy until it reached its present form.
3.Zucchini is harvested in the late summer and squash is harvested in the late fall.
4.Both zucchini and squash provide a wide variety of cooking options including frying, baking, and roasting, though squash is easier to store for long periods of time.