Favorite Crop Varieties: Buttercup Squash, Cherokee Purple Tomato and Jimenez Beans

MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers share their favorite crop varieties, including Buttercup squash, Cherokee Purple tomato, Jimenez beans and a Squash and Black Bean Chili Recipe.

| December 2003/January 2004

MOTHER's Cream of the Crops series.

MOTHER's Cream of the Crops series.

Photo by the MOTHER EARTH NEWS staff

MOTHER readers share favorite crop varieties grown in their gardens, including a squash, tomato and bean variety you will want to plant yourself.

Garden Fresh Chili

Squash and Black Bean Chili Recipe

Reader Favorite Crop Varieties

Great taste is one of the biggest reasons to grow your own garden, yet many of the best-tasting varieties are becoming hard to find. MOTHER's Cream of the Crops series presents outstanding varieties recommended by our readers.

Buttercup Squash

'Buttercup' squash is easy to grow and sweet to the taste, with spicy, buttery undertones.

An older variety of winter squash that is prolific and easy to grow, 'Buttercup' fruits are turban-shaped with gray stripes. When ripe, the skin turns emerald-green. The semi-dry pulp is a deep orange that turns vivid orange-yellow when baked or steamed. Very sweet and delicate in flavor with spicy, buttery undertones, 'Buttercup' melts in your mouth, slightly reminiscent of a good sweet potato. Delicious when served with butter and brown sugar, or sprinkled with cinnamon and nutmeg, it is a gourmet delight.

'Buttercup' vines are rampant, growing from 6 to 12 feet long, and several squash, which will vary in size from 1 to 5 pounds, will set on each one. 'Buttercup' has good keeping qualities, but doesn't keep as well as 'Butternut' or 'Blue Hubbard.'

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