I love squash. And I love stuffing vegetables with things (stuffed bell peppers and tomatoes are some of my favourites), so this is a great combination for me and all other squash lovers!
Squash have a very long shelf life, and tend to be fairly inexpensive. So if you, like me, are having trouble finding affordable produce because you live in Canada (where nothing grows between October and March), keeping a couple squash around can make planning dinner easier!
I chose acorn squash for this recipe mostly because they’re small and easy to handle, and because a couple of acorn squash can easily feed 4 people. Or 2 very hungry people.
Prep time: ~60 minutes
- 2 small acorn squash, sliced in half and de-seeded.
- 1 tbsp olive oil.
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil of your choice (olive oil, butternut squash seed oil, you decide!).
- 1 large onion, diced.
- 3 cloves garlic, minced/crushed.
- 1 cup brown rice, rinsed.
- 2 cups vegetable stock.
- 500 g mushrooms, finely sliced.
- 1 handful walnuts, crushed.
- 1 handful pecans, crushed.
- 1 small handful dried fruit (raisins, currants, etc – optional).
- 1 small handful fresh thyme, chopped (or 1 tsp dried).
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg.
- 1/2 tsp cayenne (or to taste).
- salt and pepper, to taste.
Preheat your oven to 375 F/185 C. Line a large baking tray with aluminium foil. See if your squash halves will rest hollow-side-up without falling over. If so, great! If not, slice a little bit off the back side to make sure it won’t topple over later.
Rub the inside of your squash generously with olive oil, salt, and pepper, then place the halves hollow-side-down on your baking sheet. Bake for approx 30-45 minutes, until the squash is nice and tender. This will depend on how big your squash is.
Meanwhile, making the stuffing – start out by heating a large pot on medium heat with a tablespoon or so of oil in the bottom. when the oil is hot, add in your onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent and the mushrooms are nicely cooked, this should take 5-10 minutes.
Stir in the nuts, dried fruit, thyme, nutmeg, and cayenne. Next, add in the rice and vegetable stock. Simmer until the liquid is all absorbed and the rice is cooked, about 20 minutes.
When the squash is done, remove it from the oven and flip it hollow-side-up. If the cavity is smaller than you’d like, scoop out some of the squash and mix it in with your filling. Spoon your filling into the squash, being careful not to poke holes in the skin. If you do poke a hole, seal it up with a bit of tinfoil.
Cover the squash with tinfoil as best as you can, to keep it from burning, and pop it back into the oven for about 10 minutes. Serve piping hot!