Back down to Earth

Stuffed Butternut Squash 1

I’ve found myself caught up in a spinning whirlwind of busyness over the last few months. Thankfully it seems to have put me down for a moment so I can catch my breath, and now I feel like Dorothy acclimatising herself to her new surroundings in Oz. Are we really nearing the end of October? Halloween’s coming up? And Bonfire Night? And then (whispers)…Christmas? Where has the time gone?

I hope autumn doesn’t go by too quickly as I’m really enjoying embracing it with my cooking, as you may have noticed! Tonight’s dinner was another celebration of the season using one of my favourite vegetables; the beautiful, deeply golden, nutty and sweet butternut squash.

I wanted the squash to be the centrepiece tonight rather than a side dish and I wanted an earthy dish so I used field mushrooms along with basmati and wild rice to stuff the squash after roasting it. Butternut squash seems even sweeter when you roast it so you really need something to balance it out. The seasoning and parmesan did a good job of that; be generous with both.

Stuffed Butternut Squash

2 butternut squash
2 shallots
2 large field mushrooms
60g basmati and wild rice
150ml vegetable stock
A couple of large handfuls of grated parmesan cheese

1. Cut the squash in half, scoop out seeds and fibres, then place them in a baking tray and drizzle them with olive oil. Season well and roast at 200c for 35-40 minutes.

2. While the squash is cooking, finely chop the shallots and sauté them in a saucepan for a couple of minutes in olive oil. Roughly dice the mushrooms and add them to the shallots. Fry for a few minutes more then add the rice and stir to coat it with the mixture. Add the stock, bring it to the boil, then put on a lid and simmer until the rice is cooked through (about 10 minutes).

3. Once the squash is roasted fill each half with the rice mixture then sprinkle over a good amount of parmesan cheese. Then pop them back in the oven for another 5 to 10 minutes.

Serves 2-4 depending on the size of the squash and how hungry you are!

Stuffed Butternut Squash

P.S. How are you getting on with our ‘In the Bag’ challenge this month? I’m looking forward to seeing all your creations!


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