Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Sibley Squash

The Sibley Squash, which is also known as Pike’s Peak squash, was obtained from an elderly woman in Van Dinam, Iowa who had grown it for more than fifty years. Hiram Sibley & Company of Rochester, New York introduced it commercially in 1887. It is a Hubbard-type squash with moderately vigorous 12-15 foot vines.

The slate blue teardrop-shaped fruits have very shallow ribs and weigh from 8-10 pounds. Its medium-thick orange flesh is flavorful and sweet. The flesh becomes drier and richer with storage, reaching its peak right after turn of the New Year, perfect for a roasted squash soup during those long winter months.

The Sibley Squash is on the Slow Food USA Ark of Taste, and is being grown in the Rhode Island area Renewing America's Food Traditions (RAFT) Grow-out project this year. Look for the squash at harvest time in farmers markets and on restaurant menus around the state. If you would like to grow the Sibley Squash yourself, you can purchase seeds at Seed Savers Exchange.

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