It is important to know how to tell if a spaghetti squash is bad because people consume it. Essentially, spaghetti squash is the mild-flavored winter squash variety, absorbing the surrounding flavors.
When cooked, the flesh split up into long and crunchy strands, which resemble spaghetti. It is mainly used in dishes, which call for pasta. Humankind has been eating spaghetti squash for almost five thousand years.
Mexico is considered the birthplace of the plant. It came to Europe only in the 15th century, but it migrated to the expanses of the CIS only in the 19th century.
Since then, breeders have been working to improve the quality of the fruit, getting completely round and very long varieties, white and almost black.
- Features of Spaghetti squash and main varieties
- How to tell if a spaghetti squash is bad
- Basic rules for growing spaghetti squash
Features of Spaghetti squash and main varieties
Spaghetti squash comes in several varieties. They are distinguished by being rich in vitamins. The use of fruits regulates blood formation and the amount of bad cholesterol.
Also, it has a diuretic effect, which is useful for diabetes. All varieties are a bit like an oblong pumpkin and turn into different shades of yellow when ripe. They have long whips and hard peel and, due to this, it has long-term storage.
How to tell if a spaghetti squash is bad
- Presence of mold: Spaghetti squash will go bad after cutting and storing in the refrigerator for some days.
- Low weight: This means spaghetti squash is hollow or light, oozing water, has cracked skin, or all the vegetables are soft. It has already lost enough water, and its quality is not good enough.
- Stored for long: If spaghetti squash has been cut and refrigerated for seven days and above or refrigerated or cooked for 5-6 days and above, it is time to go. Know that it is bad.
Basic rules for growing spaghetti squash
1. Seed preparation
Spaghetti squash does not require special care around itself. It is grown, as a rule, from seeds, although if there is a desire, they can be germinated to seedlings.
Soak the seeds for 3-4 days before planting to hatch. To do this, lay the planting material on a cotton pad or gauze and moisten them daily, but do not allow the seeds to float in the water.
Seeds are sown in the open ground when the soil warms to + 15 °C. Usually, it reaches this temperature by the end of May. For an earlier harvest, you can sow the seeds in a greenhouse.
2. Location selection
Spaghetti squash love space. Plant them in open sunny beds, but with protection from drafts. Dig and loosen the earth in advance and add humus or compost at the rate of 6-8 kg/m². The soil should have a light mechanical composition.
Also, it is rather problematic to grow Spaghetti squash in clay and clogged soil because this plant is desirable to lighten the ground with sand.
3. Sowing spaghetti squash seeds
Dry germinated seeds are buried in well-watered soil by 2-6 cm. In light soils, it should be deeper, and in heavy soils, it should be smaller. Due to the long lashes, each bush will need at least 0.7-1 m to a neighboring plant.
So that the culture does not spread throughout the garden, stop the growth of shoots by pinching over 4-5 leaves.
4. Caring Spaghetti squash
Water regularly, once every 7-10 days, but without waterlogging; otherwise, the ovaries will fall off. Reduce the amount of moisture by half during fruit ripening so the vegetables do not become watery.
Feed Spaghetti squash at least two times a season. Do the first dressing when young shoots appear. For this, organic matter is suitable, which must ferment for 4-6 days before use.
Mullein solution in a ratio of 1:10 or a chicken solution in a ratio of 1:20 is important. You can use mineral fertilizers like nitrophoska 30 g and urea 30 g. Dilute both drugs in 10 liters of water.
Pour 1 liter under each bush. The second top dressing is needed by the beginning of the fruit set. The same organics or mineral fertilizers with different compositions are suitable here.
Potassium nitrate and ammonium sulphate, 20 g each, and superphosphate, 40 g, are important. Dissolve all substances in 10 liters of water and pour 3-4 liters under each crop.
Spud the bushes 2-3 times during the warm period. The first time after the appearance of 4-5 leaves, then a month later and another month later. If you want Spaghetti squash pulp, pick only fully ripe yellow plants.
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What varieties of spaghetti squash to choose for planting
There are two varieties of this vegetable: white-fruited spaghetti squash and spaghetti squash, which have a more diverse fruit color (yellow, green, variegated, and striped).
It is believed that spaghetti squashes are more resistant to diseases and enter the fruiting stage much earlier. They have a special yield, which is associated with the predominance of female flowers.
According to the ripening time, spaghetti squash varieties are divided into:
- Early ripe (super early). The fruits ripen 30-50 days after planting. Such varieties are suitable for growing in the Urals and Siberia.
- Mid-season. Fruits are formed on the 50-60th day.
- Late ripe. The fruits of these varieties are harvested in late August or autumn (more than 60 days after planting).
Giving preference to one variety of this vegetable, it must be taken into account that the difference in ripening time between varieties is insignificant. Still, it is strongly manifested in the yield of this vegetable.
How to cook spaghetti squash
Preheat the oven to 180˚C. Wash spaghetti squash, cut lengthwise into two parts, and take out the seeds. Line a baking sheet with foil, grease with oil, place spaghetti squash on it, cut side down.
After 1 hour, remove the fruit and let it cool. Separate the fibers with a fork – they will play the role of pasta in the dish. Clean the mushrooms and cut into quarters.
Cut the onion into half rings and chop the garlic finely or grate. Put oil (both types) in a frying pan, fry the prepared vegetables with spices and salt until half cooked.
Cut the tomatoes into cubes and put in a pan with vegetables, simmer until the moisture evaporates. Add spaghetti squash stir. Place the dish hot on plates sprinkle with cheese.
Indeed, spaghetti squash is a unique dietary product and has a very delicate taste. Even though you can meet spaghetti squash in almost any garden, not every summer resident can grow them successfully.
Planting this vegetable requires taking into account some features. Now you know how to tell if spaghetti squash is bad.