Saturday, November 13, 2010

Cheesy Stuffed Squash

Clearly I'm a little obsessed with stuffing cute little squash with tasty fillings. It's just such a convenient and beautiful way of presenting the super healthy vegetable and it works as either a side dish or a fabulous vegetarian entree.

This stuffed squash (inspired by the awesome A Good Appetite blog) is without a doubt the most delicious version I've ever tried. It's scary good - one of those recipes where you can't eat it silently and instead continuously mutter to yourself about how good it is.

I was concerned that the combination of wild rice and vegetarian sausage would be too much richness and was going to just do one or the other but I'm glad I didn't. Field Roast brand of vegan sausages are absolutely amazing and I swear the apple sage flavor was invented for this recipe. I like to break apart the links and brown the "meat" in a skillet. Then adding the wild rice adds a nuttiness and great chewy texture. Some crusty bread cubes, gruyere cheese, and cream bind the rice and sausage together to make a sinfully good cheesy sauce.

When the most difficult thing about a recipe is using enough muscle to cut off the top of a little squash, it's clear that anyone can make this recipe! I tried to make just a tiny bit of filling because I had only one squash, but I still had enough of the mixture leftover to fill another one.

It's a rich and savory little pot of deliciousness, that's also very nutritious, especially when served with some Dijon Brussels Sprouts.

Cheesy Stuffed Squash
1/4 cup cooked wild rice
1 Field Roast vegetarian sausage (optional - apple/sage or Italian flavors)
1/4 cup crusty day old bread, cut into cubes (I used ciabatta)
1/4 cup grated gruyere cheese
half and half - enough to cover the other ingredients (approx 1/2 cup?)
salt, pepper, and fresh grated nutmeg
1 small squash - acorn, festival, delicata, or other variety

Cover a sheet pan with tinfoil and preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Cut the top off the squash and scoop out the seeds. Cut a tiny slice off the bottom so the squash sits upright.

Mix all the other ingredients together and add half and half until everything is moistened. Spoon the mixture into the squash until filled, add more half and half if so it's good and moist (it will thicken upon baking). Put lid back on squash and rub olive oil all over the outside of the squash.

Bake 45-55 minutes or until squash is tender when poked with a knife. The cheesy insides will probably have seeped out but that's what the tinfoil is for!

ONE YEAR AGO: Thanksgiving Wild Rice Salad (I'm totally bringing this to my family's T-Day celebration this year!)

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