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Stuffed Acorn Squash with Swiss Chard, Pecans, Dried Cherries & Buckwheat

  • October 18th, 2012

This is the time of year when I can’t wait to get my hands on all of the beautiful, colorful winter squash at the market. There is something so alive and sensual about winter squash this time of year. I enjoy almost all of them in a variety of dishes, but one of my favorite ways to prepare winter squash is to halve it and stuff it with something scrumptious like one of my favorite whole grains, greens, nuts and dried fruit. If I’m feeling frisky, I may even add little bits of ground venison or pastured pork sausage bits for flavor and to make my husband happy.

I was playing in the kitchen the other night and came up with the following recipe. Enjoy!

 

Stuffed Acorn Squash with Swiss Chard, Pecans, Dried Cherries & Buckwheat

Ingredients:

  • 1 acorn squash, halved
  • 2 sausage links (from pastured, organic animals or wild game)
  • 2 cups of cooked buckwheat (sprout overnight, then follow the directions below)
  • 2 TBSP maple syrup
  • 1 leek
  • ¾ cup dried cherries
  • ½ cup toasted, chopped pecans
  • 1 bunch of Swiss Chard
  • 2 TBSP of fresh or dried thyme (may need more if fresh)
  • 2 TBSP of marjoram
  • olive oil
  • sea salt
  • pepper

Note: The ingredient measurements are approximations. Unfortunately for you, I’m a cook that hates to dirty a measuring cup or spoon.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Halve an acorn squash. You could also use Kabocha, Carnival or Delicata squash for this recipe. Place squash flesh side down in a pan with a ¼ inch of water. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes.
  3. Pre-soak buckwheat in water with a splash of raw apple cider vinegar overnight. Drain and toast in a skillet. Place in a pot and add water until the level is about ½ inch above the buckwheat line. Cook until there is no water left in the pot.
  4. Saute sausage in a large skillet. Remove and slice into small pieces. Saute leeks in the pan and then add Swiss chard. Add sausage after Swiss chard is tender.
  5. Once the buckwheat is done, add to to the mixture. In a separate pan, toast pecans. Add the pecans, dried cherries, maple syrup, salt, thyme, olive oil and marjoram. If more moisture is needed, add water or stock.
  6. Once the squash halves are soft, stuff the mixture inside the halves. You may wish to grate some fresh pecorino cheese on top. Bake in the oven for an additional 15 minutes.

Let me know how you like it. Also, you can exchange buckwheat with any whole grain, pecans with any nut, cherries with any dried fruit and Swiss chard with any green. The possibilities are endless and make for an interesting stuffed squash dish!

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