I wish I had the room to grow squash. Because I love squash. Butternut Squash. Acorn Squash. Santa Squash and many other Fancy-Schmancy Squashes. They are all good. You can do so much with them too. Baked Squash, Fried Squash, Squash Soup, P’sghetti Squash & Meatballs even…the possibilities are endless.
It is Fall in Ontario, which means it is comfort food season. Apples, squash and all kinds of root vegetables are at their peak. Nothing like freshly pulled carrots to make your taste buds appreciate your hard work all summer.
Squashes are even better. They are sweet and savoury all at the same time. They also lend themselves well to my somewhat slapdash cookery habits when I have “this n’ that” leftover in the fridge and I am flying solo for dinner.
Today was just such a meal. I had an Acorn Squash in the fridge, along with a half cup of sliced mushrooms (leftover from pizza night) along with about a cup of cooked brown and wild rice mix from last night’s dinner, and half of a huge Honeycrisp apple (which are deelish and my favourite apple). I pulled these ingredients out of the fridge, added a few more and this is what I came up with…
My ‘Leftovers’ Autumn Stuffed Squash
1 Acorn Squash
1/2 cup chopped, sweet onion
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped apple (use any apple that lends itself well to cooking and holding its shape), leave skin on (for fiber!)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 Tbsp grated Asiago cheese
Pinch of cinnamon
Dash of Ground Sage
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Dash of Salt and Pepper to taste
Slice squash in half (you will need extra muscle for this step, ask hubby to help if he is around) and scoop out seeds. Place cut sides down on a foil lined cookie sheet. Fill cookie sheet half full with water and roast in a 350°F oven for 40 minutes or until fork tender.
Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, drizzle olive oil and heat pan over medium-low heat. Add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes until starting to become translucent. Add mushrooms and sauté another 5 minutes. Add chopped apple and the dried cranberries, salt, pepper, sage and cinnamon. Continue cooking for about another 5 minutes. Add cooked rice and stir to combine. Remove from heat and set aside.
Take squash out of the oven and place in a baking dish (cut side up), stuff with stuffing mixture, top each half with cheese and put back in the oven for about 15 minutes or until cheese melts.
Serve either as a vegetarian main entre or a side dish for meat lovers (pork tenderloin would go fabulous with this dish). Feel free to sub the acorn squash with another type, they are all great!
Makes 2 servings