Aunt Suzy says . . . 

I recently made this mash-up of two previously posted recipes here on S&SK, acorn squash with Indonesian rice and stuffed pumpkins. This was so delicious, I thought I’d create a post of its own! I think my favorite thing to stuff these days is Kabocha squash, also called Japanese pumpkin, because of their creamy texture and superior flavor. Even though the picture in this Wikipedia post is green on the outside, I have only seen the red variety in our local coop. I imagine the flesh inside is equally delicious in both!

Stuffed Kabocha Squash with Indonesian Rice – directions

Purchase squash of 2-3 pounds. Each squash will serve 2-4 people depending on size and other components of the meal.

Make the Indonesian rice, as specified in the acorn squash recipe.  It should be on the wet side.

Follow the directions for preparing and baking the squash in the stuffed pumpkin post. To recap, pre-heat the oven to 350F. You’ll then cut a “lid” from the top of the squash and then remove the seeds. Don’t throw away the lid! Rinse out the inside and then stuff with the rice. Put the lid back on the squash. Place stuffed squash on a rimmed baking sheet lined in foil. Bake in the oven for 90 minutes. Remove the lid and bake for another 20-30 minutes. You should be able to easily pierce the squash with a knife or cake tester. Remove from the oven, put lids back on and let sit 20-30 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve! Here’s a pic of the finished product before cutting.

 

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Aunt Suzy says . . .

When fall rolls around and the markets are filled with winter squash, I can’t wait to make this dish.   It’s an amalgamation of two recipes, one from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone (one of my very favorite cookbooks!) and one from Rodale’s Basic Natural Foods.   The aromatic rice is filled with goodies and flavor and melds perfectly with the creamy earthiness of the squash.  This works really well as a vegetarian main dish or as a side to chicken or pork.   The earthy creaminess of a Pinot Blanc white wine pairs beautifully.

Margaux says . . .

We make this dish every year since we first got the recipe from Aunt Suzy in our very first “dinner in a box” gift.  It makes a really great dish for company, especially for us because many of our friends are vegetarian.  We usually serve it as a main course with an elegant salad, or sometimes with a flavorful pureed soup.

The Squash

2-4 Acorn or Sweet Dumpling Squash

Cut squash lengthwise and scoop out seeds.  Lay cut side down in a foil-lined roasting pan or cookie sheet and bake 40 minutes at 375 degrees.  I find it’s helpful to loosen the squash with a spatula about half-way through the baking so that they don’t stick to the foil.

 

 

 The Stuffing

3 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 small onion, minced

1 small green pepper, minced

½ cup pine nuts

½ tsp each paprika and thyme

¼ tsp each cinnamon, cumin and oregano

1/3 cup currants

1 cup white or brown rice

2 cups water

Juice of one lemon

1- 15 ounce can of chickpeas

Salt to taste

Sauté onions, green peppers and pine nuts in oil until soft, 5-8 minutes.  Add currants and all herbs/spices and sauté for 1 minute, then add the rice and saute for a few more minutes.

Add water, lemon juice and salt. Cook, covered, till liquid is absorbed (20 min for white rice; 45 for brown).   Let stand for 10 minutes, then fold in chick peas.

Finishing

Mound stuffing into squash.

Bake upright, uncovered, for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  Here’s a pic of the finished meal – squash, baked chicken breast and the tiniest, cutest, most delicious brussel sprouts ever!

COOKS’ NOTES:  The rice ends up a little on the wet side which is important so that it doesn’t dry out in the final baking step.  You can also serve this rice as a side dish without the squash.  In this case maybe back off ¼ to ½ cup on the liquid.  Steps 1 and 2 can be done up to 2 days ahead of time and refrigerated.  Let the squash and rice come to room temperature before finishing.

In either case, you are likely to have stuffing left over.  I had 3 squash – 6 halves to be filled – and still had enough of the rice left over to use as a stuffing in two small-ish green peppers for a second meal, as follows:

Stuffed Green Peppers

Add the following to the stuffing:

1/3-1/2 pound ground lamb (beef works also)

2 peeled, seeded and chopped Roma tomatoes

Cut two red or green peppers in half lengthwise and take out seeds and ribs.  Mound the stuffing in the peppers and drizzle with olive oil.  Bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes.

Delicious with oven roasted potatoes and an herbal red Cotes du Rhone!