Autumn Squash

By Isabel Minunni

I actually won a recipe contest with a stuffed acorn squash! However this is not that recipe, sorry. The winning recipe gives me merits for having other successful stuffed squash recipes! 

I have a vegan daughter and, yes, sometimes it feels as though she ties my hands while cooking for her. But at times it has challenged me as I am always happy to meet the challenge for her. The stuffed squash phase I went through has proven fruitful in our house. No one was truly a squash fan. They only ate it because it was on the plate, with the same old, same old, recipe. 

I decided that such an awesome ingredient needed more of my attention. When I give something my attention everyone knows that ingredient very, very well. I am happy to announce that my recipe has made a fan of my vegan daughter and my picky eater daughter. As a mom, cook and recipe developer, that is a win-win.

Stuff your favorite squash with your favorite ingredients, let your food favorites fly, and remember…food should be fun, inventive and shared.

Nothing says autumn like an in-season vegetable like squash.

This squash bake is easy and very dramatic in presentation. When this squash bakes, the inside becomes creamy, while the top becomes crispy and crunchy. I just love the contrast of texture, plus the beans take on a nutty flavor. Delish!  

Rice and Bean Acorn Squash Bowl Bakes

2 large acorn squash- cut in half and seeds scooped out
3 cups cooked rice
2 cups broccoli spears-cooked
3 cups cooked red beans-drained
2 cloves garlic-minced
2 to 3 cups almond milk
1 1/2 teaspoons five spice
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoon olive oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Place all ingredients besides squash and almond milk into a

medium size bowl and mix.*

Place cut squash onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet, cut side up. Stuff each squash evenly with prepared stuffing; pour almond milk evenly into each stuffed squash. Brush the top of edges of each stuffed squash with olive oil. Place stuffed squash in the preheated oven and cook for 1 hour or until squash is tender.

Take out of oven. Serve and enjoy!

Serve 2-4

*You can add more warm coconut milk during cooking to make the stuffing more creamy as the squash and rice will absorb milk.

Serves as a side dish or main course. 

Recipe also available @ Bellasbanquet.com