Most of us imagine a pumpkin as a big orange ball.
However, the gourd, or pumpkin, has a number of varieties and variants, one of which is the patizon.
It has a specific shape and taste, so it has a variety of uses in the kitchen.
What can be cooked from it and how can you possibly grow it at home?
Why should it be consumed not only by those trying to lose weight, but also by pregnant women?
Our article will tell you all this and much more about this unusual crop.
What is patizon?
Although many of us often admire the non-traditional shape of patizons, it usually does not occur to us that it is actually a cultivar of pumpkin or common gourd (Cucurbita pepo). However, patizonas, like for example zucchini, are really one of its varieties. The first squashes, in Latin Cucurbita pepo var. patissonina, were once bred in Central America.
What does patizon look and taste like?
Patizon is actually a flattened disk-shaped pumpkin with wavy edges. Its surface can be wrinkled or smooth. Although white patizons are the most famous in our country, you can also find variants in yellow, orange or green.
Unlike pumpkins, its seeds are usually not eaten. The flesh is floury and, if properly matured, has a sweetish flavor that is milder than pumpkin but more pronounced than zucchini. Compared to zucchini, patizon is also less watery.
What does patizon contain?
Patizon contains very few calories, as it contains a large amount of water and only a few carbohydrates. Compared to its closest botanical relatives, pumpkin and zucchini, it contains more fiber.
Nutritional values of patizon
| Raw patizon|
| Raw pumpkin|
| Raw zucchini|
|Energy||18 calories||26 kcal||17 calories|
|Water||94.2 g||91.6 g||94.8 g|
|Carbohydrates||3.84 g||6.5 g||3.11 g|
|Proteins||1.2 g||1 g||1.21 g|
|Fats||0.2 g||0.1 g||0.32 g|
|Fiber||1.2 g||0.5 g||1 g|
Vitamins and minerals
This vegetable also contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, folic acid, potassium, magnesium and manganese.
| Raw patizon|
| Raw pumpkin|
| Raw zucchini|
|Beta-carotene||130 µg||3100 µg||120 µg|
|Vitamin B1||0.07 mg||0.05 mg||0.045 mg|
|Vitamin B2||0.03 mg||0.11 mg||0.094 mg|
|Vitamin B3||0.6 mg||0.6 mg||0.451 mg|
|Vitamin B5||0.102 mg||0.298 mg||0.204 mg|
|Vitamin B6||0.109 mg||0.061 mg||0.163 mg|
|Vitamin C||18 mg||9 mg||17.9 mg|
|Potassium||182 mg||340 mg||261 mg|
|Phosphorus||36 mg||44 mg||38 mg|
|Magnesium||23 mg||12 mg||18 mg|
|Sodium||1 mg||1 mg||8 mg|
|Calcium||19 mg||21 mg||16 mg|
|Zinc||0.29 mg||0.32 mg||0.32 mg|
|Iron||0.4 mg||0.8 mg||0.37 mg|
Why include patisons in the menu?
Due to its nutritional values and content of valuable substances, the consumption of patizons brings a number of positives to our body.
- Cardiovascular disease – thanks to its high potassium content and low sodium content, patizon helps to improve blood pressure problems, thereby reducing the burden on the cardiovascular system and preventing blood clots, heart attacks and strokes. In addition, the high fiber content also contributes to lowering cholesterol levels.
- Digestive system – patisons contain a large amount of soluble and insoluble fiber, which has a very positive effect on our digestive system, especially on the intestines.
- Improving eyesight : due to the content of beta-carotene and other antioxidants, including patizonas in the diet helps to reduce the risk of eye diseases, such as macular degeneration.
- Immune system : vitamin C is very important for the proper functioning of the immune system. If you are prone to flu or colds, it is definitely worth consuming more patizona in the autumn months.
- Weight reduction – patisons are low in calories, but because they are full of fiber, they are very filling, thus contributing positively to reducing food intake, and are thus a popular part of weight loss diets.
- Reducing the incidence of birth defects – pregnant women should also include these vegetables in their diet, especially in the first months of pregnancy. One of the many nutrients contained in patizones is folic acid. Folate, which is one of the B vitamins, helps ensure the proper development of the brain and spinal cord of the developing fetus and prevents neural tube defects.
How to prepare patizon?
One of the advantages of patisons is that they can be prepared in many ways, for example stewed as part of various vegetable or meat dishes, stuffed, baked, grilled or fried. There are many different recipes with patizon . In addition, they can also be sterilized or fermented.
How to peel patizon?
Although it is not absolutely necessary to remove the patizon from its skin, especially for young fruits, some people still prefer to peel it. Of course, the older the fruit, the harder the skin. A sharp knife is a must.
How to remove the skin quickly and easily? First wash the patizon under running water and then cut it in half. From each part, using a knife, we remove the remains of the stem in the upper part and the remains of the flower in the lower part. Then carefully cut each half into wedges or slices, depending on how we want to process the patizon afterwards. The skin and seeds can then be easily removed from the smaller pieces.
What to cook from patizon?
- Patizon cut into small pieces can often be used in a variety of recipes or various vegetable mixtures, which can then be used as a base for other dishes or as a healthy side dish.
- If you cut the patizon into slices, you can simply wrap it in plastic wrap and use it to make tasty patizon cutlets. The thinner the slices, the crispier the cutlets will be. Fried patizon can be wrapped not only in a classic three-pack, but also in beer batter, for example.
- Grated patizon can be an interesting revival of cauliflower patties, it can also be used to diversify recipes for classic potato pancakes or meatballs.
- Baked patizon is also very popular. How to bake patizon? Together with other vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots or eggplant, cut it into pieces, season it, drizzle it with oil and put it in the oven. French fries made from patizon and other vegetables prepared in this way can be a separate delicacy as well as a tasty side dish.
- Do you know how to prepare a tasty omelette ? Use grated patizon in it. Just simmer it gently in a pan and then cover it with a mixture of eggs with a little sour cream and breadcrumbs.
- Patizon with eggs, bacon and cheese is also a delicacy. In combination with fresh bread or baked potatoes, you will have a quick and tasty dinner or lunch.
- In addition, patizon spread can also be a tasty and healthy dinner or snack. Just mix grated patizon with grated cheese, spread butter and herbs.
- Patizon in combination with other vegetables such as tomatoes, cheese and herbs can also be baked in a variety of ways. Various recipes for baked zucchini can be an inspiration.
- You may be surprised to learn that you can also pickle patizons in the same way that cucumbers are pickled. Just put them chopped into a mixture of water, salt, dill and other herbs and let them ferment for a few days. Patisons prepared this way are great in salads or as part of a side dish. In addition, patizon can also be canned.
- If you like to prepare creamy pumpkin soups , you will surely be pleased that a similar soup can also be prepared very easily from patizon. Patizon soup is often served with croutons.
- Last but not least, patisons can also be filled in the same way as pepper pods. Just hollow them out and fill them with, for example, meat, cheese, mushrooms or a mixture of other vegetables.
Cultivation of patizon
Patizon belongs to the extensive family of gourd plants, so it is related to, for example, cucumber or watermelon. The patizon itself (Cucurbita pepo, variety patissonina) is one of the cultivars of the common gourd. It originally comes from the regions of Central America, where various types of gourds were cultivated more than 5,000 years ago. It reached Europe in the same way as potatoes, tomatoes and peppers during the 15th century thanks to overseas discoveries.
The patizon plant itself is somewhat similar to the pumpkin plant, but has the shape of a bush. Yellow flowers are formed in the hollows of the leaves, which resemble cucumber flowers. They will subsequently produce fruits that are suitable to be harvested already in the summer, when they are not yet fully ripe. An ideal patizon has a diameter of 10-15 cm.
How to grow your own patizon?
Unfortunately, we don’t see this vegetable very often on store shelves. Patizon can usually only be found at farmers markets or organic farms, so it is best to grow it yourself in your garden.
If possible, choose a sunny place for it with permeable soil and enough nutrients. Before sowing, it is also advisable to add compost to the soil. At the beginning of April, plant the seeds in flower pots or cups, as it is more convenient to pre-grow the plants before planting them in the flower bed. Plant only one seed in each cup.
Small seedlings are usually planted in the soil only in mid-May. Similar to, for example, cucumbers, patisons also require regular, but not excessive watering. Be careful not to get water on the leaves when watering.
The most popular varieties of patizons grown in our gardens include the white varieties Delikates, Snowdisc F1 or Patinova, as well as the yellow Sunseance F1 or the dark green variety Greendisc F1.
Harvesting and storage of patizon
We harvest young patizonas already in July, when their skin is not yet so hard. Over time, the fruits ripen and the skin hardens, but they can also be harvested during autumn. Older fruits must be cut, young ones can be “tamed”. If you want to store patisons over the winter, like pumpkins, they need a dry and cool place.