Kendall: I love making stuffed squash. It fills my kitchen with sweet and savory scents and fills me up without feeling bloated and tired afterward. My mother-in-law also makes her own delicious version of stuffed squash. She gave me the idea to make them up ahead of time, wrapping each half of a stuffed squash in aluminum foil, baking some immediately to enjoy now and storing the rest in the fridge for up to three days. Then you just pop them in the oven and they’re ready to eat in an hour!
Acorn squash contains phytonutrients like beta-carotene, which reduces free radicals in the body.
Yield: makes 4 stuffed squash halves
2 acorn squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 red onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 small zucchini, small chop
2 medium tomatoes, roughly chopped
5 crimini mushrooms, finely chopped
2 cups baby spinach, loosely packed
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
Dash of freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups brown rice, cooked
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Gently scrub the skins of the squash and cut off any long stems. Slice the acorn squash in half, from end to end, and scoop out seeds and loose membranes.
To prepare the stuffing, sauté the red onion in olive oil for two minutes over medium heat or until onion begins to soften. Add the garlic and sauté for one minute until it just begins to turn a very light golden brown. Add the zucchini, tomatoes and mushrooms and cook for five minutes or until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the spinach, paprika, cumin, yeast, salt and pepper. Stir and let simmer for five minutes. Stir in the cooked rice and remove from heat.
Turn the squash cut-side up and scoop stuffing mixture into each squash half, packing it well and mounding the mixture high. Wrap each squash half in aluminum foil and place on a cookie sheet. Bake for one hour until the squash is thoroughly tender and easy to pierce with a fork.