Summer squash varieties are available throughout summer and early fall in Idaho. Summer squash includes zucchini, yellow squash, crookneck and patty-pan squash. Summer squash differs from winter squash due to the fact that they are harvested before the rind hardens and the fruit matures. They grow on bushy-type plants that do no spread like winter squash plants do.
How to pick: Select a small and tender squash variety that is 8-12 inches long, as over-sized squash can be hard and seedy. However, you can use large-sized zucchini for baked items like cakes and bread.
How to store: Refrigerate unwashed summer squash in a plastic bag in the vegetable crisper for up to five days.
At some restaurants and farmers markets you will also see squash blossoms that can be used in many dishes. Squash blossoms can be eaten raw, fried, baked or added to your favorite pasta or soup dish.