Autumn Stuffed Squash

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Ingredients (use vegan versions):


  • 2 medium acorn squash
  • 1/2 cup dry lentils
  • 1/4 cup rice (any kind but instant)
  • 1 medium apple OR 1 medium pear
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 stalk celery
  • pumpkin pie spice OR apple pie spice OR cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg, ginger
  • (optional) molasses OR vegan brown sugar OR vegan maple syrup
  • (optional) mushrooms, peppers, other veggies

Directions:


I came up with this recipe when I was looking for
something to make for myself for Thanksgiving
dinner when my family was eating turkey. It’s
great any time of year, but especially in the fall
when squash and apples/pears are cheap 🙂


Wash the squash and pierce it a few times with a
knife (be sure to get the knife good and deep into
the flesh so that it doesn’t explode). Place the
squash into a baking dish and bake at 375 F for
30-45 minutes, or until it’s somewhat soft.


While the squash is baking, put the rice, lentils,
spices, and 1 1/2 cups of water in a saucepan.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer with a
cover on for about 40 minutes or until the water
is absorbed and the rice and lentils are soft.
Take it off the heat.


Dice the onion and apple or pear (and
mushrooms/peppers/other veggies, if using) and
slice the celery. Spray a frying pan with
nonstick cooking spray and saute the veggies and
apple or pear until everything is pretty soft and
smelling yummy. Add the veggies to the
rice/lentil mixture, and add sweetener if you want
(taste it first — if the apple/pear is sweet
enough, you might not need any sweetener!).


Remove the squash from the oven and reduce heat to
350 F. Slice the squash in half lengthwise (be
careful — it’ll be HOT) and remove the seeds and
membrane with a spoon (save them for roasted
squash seeds — yum!). Place the
rice/lentil/veggie mixture into the hollow in each
squash half (don’t be afraid to pile it up pretty
high) and place the squash back into the baking
pan. Cover the pan with tin foil and bake for
another 45-55 minutes, or until the squash is soft
and everything is heated through. You can drizzle
a little sweetener on during the last 10 minutes of
baking for a special treat if you want. Eat and
enjoy!


The filling above makes enough to stuff at least 2
medium sized acorn squash. It’s also really yummy
by itself. Pretty much any kind of apple or pear
will work here. If you like the apples to come
out really soft and sauce-like, choose a softer,
juicier apple like McIntosh or Red Delicious; for
firmer, more noticeable apples, use a good crispy
tart apple like Macoun, Granny Smith, or Jonagold.
You can also try it with other kinds of winter
squash.


1/2 half medium squash with 1/4 of filling has
about 300 calories, virtually no fat, and lots of
fiber (especially if you eat the skin of the
squash) and vitamin A.


Serves: 3-4


Preparation time: 2 hr

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