The pumpkin-shaped Kabocha Squash has a forest green skin with light striations and often ranges in size from 9 to 12 inches in diameter. Unlike summer squash (which are picked when immature and skins are tender), Kabocha Squash have hard, thick skins and only the flesh is eaten. It taste similar between a sweet potato and pumpkin with a rich sweetness and almost fiberless flesh.
It can be baked, steamed, pureed, braised, chunked, or smoothed in soups, and baked in puddings, pies, and cakes.
Choose squash that have a hard, deep-colored rind free of blemishes or moldy spots. Tender skin indicates immaturity or poor quality. The hard skin protects the flesh and allows it to store longer than summer squash. Store Kobocha Squash in a cool, preferably dark, well-ventilated area for up to one month. Wrap cut pieces in plastic and refrigerate up to five days.
Kobocha Squash may be cooked whole or split lengthwise (removing seeds). Pierce whole squash in several places, and bake halved squash hollow side up.