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Summer Squashes

Summer squashes are picked while they are still tender and immature. They tend to be small with thin skins that rarely need peeling, and should be eaten within a few days of receipt.

Most people will be familiar with courgettes (also known as zucchini), which can be either green or yellow, but are not so familiar with Patty Pan or Little Gem squash. Try baking Gem squashes whole. Cut off the top to form a lid, pull out the fibres and seeds. Insert a knob of herb butter, or plain butter, and seasoning. Replace top and stand in a baking dish in some water. Bake at 350F/180C (gas mark 4) until tender (about 30 mins), Add more water if the squashes are dry, cover with foil if they begin to burn. When young, the seeds may also be eaten and have a slightly nutty flavour. Alternatively, microwave whole. Slice off top; scoop out seeds and fibres. Replace top and place in microwave dish. Add 2tbsp water, cover with film, pierce and cook on high until tender - about 8 minutes for 2 Gem squashes.

Patty Pan squashes can be yellow, green, white or even striped; are slightly firmer than courgettes, with a similar flavour. They are very decorative with their scalloped edges. They can be sliced and grilled in the same way as courgettes or fried with garlic. To make the most of their size and shape, steam them whole until tender.Patty Pan squashes can be yellow, green, white or even striped; are slightly firmer than courgettes, with a similar flavour. They are very decorative with their scalloped edges. They can be sliced and grilled in the same way as courgettes or fried with garlic. To make the most of their size and shape, steam them whole until tender.

Spaghetti Squash

Long and pale yellow, they earned their name from the resemblance of the cooked flesh to spaghetti.

To boil a spaghetti squash, first pierce the end, so that the heat can reach the middle, then cook for about 25 minutes or until the skin feels tender. Cut the squash in half lengthways, remove the seeds, and then fork the strands of flesh out on to a plate. It has a fragrant; almost honey and lemon flavour and tastes good with garlic butter or pesto. May also be served with any other of your favourite spaghetti sauces.

N.B. Sometimes we cut the larger ones in half for the vegeboxes.