How to Identify Buttercup and Kabocha
Buttercup squash is a lot like kabocha with a belly button ó but generally a little larger, a little moister, and not as nuanced in terms of flavor.
Kabocha is round with no imperfections on button, the area where the turban grows on a Buttercup.
Buttercup shape is different more square.
The kabocha stem shape is different as well, not squishy. Itís more like a tree trunk.
However, the single most important characteristic is that tiny button bottom.. no variation in it.. smooth, non issue.. If itís bumpy or raised, or two levels, even if it is not a traditional buttercup cap, it still ainít a kabocha butt.
Taste: The buttercup is wet and kinda goes to goo no matter what you do to itÖand didnít make a good fry. Kabocha tastes more substantial. The texture of kabocha is denser to me and there is just a taste to it that is different. It stays in chunks easier.
It seems that a kabocha/buttercup hybrid is often sold in stores, as the buttercup turban rarely shows and the shape is rounded yet flat.
Johnny seeds kabocha/buttercup hybrids.
Sweet Mama Hybrid Kabocha (maxima; maturity 75 days)
Black Forest (Buttercup)
Black Forest is a Kabocha type button-less Buttercup. It has a deep orange fiber-less flesh. It is medium-dry with a rich sweet flavor. Buttercups become sweeter after a few weeks, so don't be afraid to store this one. This variety is native to the United States. It is also called "Buttonless Buttercup".