While I’m not particularly excited about the coming of fall, as it inevitably leads to winter…well, I guess I can’t complain too much anymore since I live in San Jose now…so, well, I take it back. I’m ok with fall. But the whole point of this was food, to say that I’m excited about fall food. And while most people are shoving pumpkin down our throats, I have a different favorite: acorn squash. Which I shove down Marco’s throat every fall, but I don’t think he notices. He just likes food.
Anyways, I know we have a few stuffed squash recipes already (both a sausage and a southwestern-style stuffed squash), but I thought it wouldn’t hurt to throw in a super simple variation to the mix. In previous versions, we’ve pre-cooked squash halves, added the filling into each open half, and returned them to the oven to finish. This time, I opted for using the entire squash as a baking vessel, topped with it’s own lid, and cooked from start to finish with the filling inside, really letting the juices from the chorizo and vegetables soak into the squash meat.
It’s a super simple recipe, with the strong flavors of the chorizo able to carry the dish alone without added spices. You can really throw in whatever vegetables you have on hand, and that left over rice you might have in the fridge helps to make this an easy clean-out-the-pantry kind of meal.
4 acorn squash
8 oz of pork chorizo
2 celery stalks, diced
1/2 of a small onion, diced
1/2 cup of diced mushrooms
2 sweet mini peppers (or small bell pepper), diced
2 tablespoons of butter (or margarine or olive oil, dairy free options)
1 cup of cooked rice
Salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Chop the tops of each squash off and remove the seeds and pulp. Trim the bottoms if needed, so that the squash stand up straight. Cover a sheet pan with tin foil and place the squash on the pan. Put half a tablespoon of butter inside each squash. Crack a little salt and pepper in there as well.
Once your veggies are all chopped and ready to go, put the chorizo in a hot skillet set over medium heat.
Add the onion and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until the chorizo is no longer pink. Add the celery and the pepper, cooking for another 2 minutes or so, and finally the mushrooms. Add the cup of cooked rice, stir to fully incorporate, and turn off the heat.
Stuff each squash with the filling, packing it all in there, and replace the squash “lid.”
Place the sheet pan in the middle of the preheated oven and bake for an hour. Check for doneness with a fork, if the meat of the squash gives easily, then it’s ready to go.
I left ours to sit in the warm oven while I went to pick Marco up from work, and they were still nice and toasty for us when we got back.
It was a great little meal packed with plenty of flavor. And you could easily swap out the chorizo for a vegetarian/vegan meal. Hope you enjoy!