Saturday, December 22, 2012

Stuffed Acorn Squash



Is there anything cuter than an acorn squash? I ask because I bought my first acorn squash recently and I can't stop thinking how cute it is; I'm wondering if this is normal or if I need an intervention. That squat figure, those curvy ridges, the creamy innards, who can resist it? And is it ever good for you! Like Vitamins C and A, calcium, iron and fiber good. And I feel the need for some serious sustenance 'cause I've been having cookies for dinner since the first week of December.

As beautiful as the acorn squash is to look at it's that much better roasted and stuffed. Quinoa seems to be the most fashionable grain of choice at the moment for stuffing your squash, not that I need an excuse to eat quinoa, so I just had to put my spin on it. I went with sweet and nutty as in dates, apples and walnuts. Half a squash would be sufficient for lunch. The whole she-bang would do for dinner just add a side salad.  

stuffed acorn squash

2 acorn squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut each squash in half around the middle and remove all the seeds. I like to clean out the center with a spoon just to make it nice and even for the filling. Place in a roasting pan, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until fork tender. 

filling

3/4 cups quinoa, washed and drained
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small or 1/2 large onion, minced
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 small apple or 1/2 large, peeled and diced
4 or 5 dates, pit removed, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
salt and pepper to taste

While the squash is roasting, cook the quinoa according to the package instructions. Once the quinoa is cooked, heat the  oil in a large skillet on medium high heat, add onions and cook, stirring often until onions begin to get translucent. Add the thyme, apple, walnuts, quinoa and dates and lower the heat. Cook just until everything is heated through and adjust the seasoning.

Stuff the roasted squash with filling and place back in the oven for 10 minutes. Makes 2 to 4 servings.







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