How to Cook Calabaza Squash Cuban Style

Grilled Squash Calabaza, in case you have never heard of it before, is a somewhat pumpkin shaped squash that is often used in Cuban cooking. Some people also refer to it as the West Indian pumpkin or the green...

Grilled Squash
Grilled Squash

Calabaza, in case you have never heard of it before, is a somewhat pumpkin shaped squash that is often used in Cuban cooking. Some people also refer to it as the West Indian pumpkin or the green pumpkin squash. Capable of being cooked in a variety of ways, it has a sweet, mild flavor. The flavor is reminiscent of what you would get by mixing butternut and acorn squash puree together. Today, we wanted to share how to cook calabaza squash Cuban style.

Grilled Calabaza Squash

One of the best ways to prepare calabaza is on the grill. It really lets the sweet flavor of the squash shine through. To prepare the dish, you’ll need a medium size calabaza and the following items.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Chef’s knife (sharp and large)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1/3 cup Spanish olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. White vinegar
  • 1 Spoon or scraper
  • 1 Cutting board
  • 1 Basting brush
  • 1 Mixing bowl
  • 1 Whisk

Directions:

Start the process by washing and cutting the calabaza squash into quarters. Be forewarned. It can be hard to cut through the calabaza squash. That’s why it is very important that your large chef’s knife is well sharpened. Next, use a spoon or scraper to remove the calabaza squash’s seeds and stringy, surface fibers. You’ll also want to remove the rinds from each piece. Continue by disposing of the fibers and rinds. The seeds may be saved and roasted in the oven at a later time.

Once that is done, pour the Spanish oil and white vinegar into a mixing bowl. Whisk them together thoroughly. When they are well blended, use the resulting mixture to baste each quarter of the calabaza squash. Then season the calabaza squash quarters to taste before placing them onto the grill.

As the calabaza squash quarters cook, they’ll turn a light brown and become tender. It usually takes about 10 minutes on a medium hot grill to reach that state. Afterward, remove the grilled calabaza squash quarters and serve them with pernil (roasted pork shoulder) and white rice.

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