Acorn Squash Stuffed with Wild Rice, Pears, Cranberries, and Walnuts
- 3 Acorn or Dumpling squash
- ground pepper, to taste
- ground nutmeg, to taste
- 4 Tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
- 3/4 cup wild rice
- 1 1/2 cups canned low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 1/4 tsp salt, plus extra to taste
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 large clove garlic, minced
- 1 large rib celery, finely chopped
- 2 firm Bosc or Anjou pears, peeled, halved, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 tsp minced fresh sage
- 2 tsp minced fresh thyme leaves
- 1/3 cup minced fresh parsley
- 1/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
- 1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. Cut each squash in half crosswise; scoop out and discard the seeds and strings. Trim the top and bottom so that the squash will sit level, and place on a rimmed baking sheet, cut side up. Sprinkle each half with a salt, pepper, and nutmeg, to taste. Using 3 Tbsp of the butter, dot each half with some butter. Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake the squash until moist and tender, about 45 minutes.
- While squash cooks, combine the rice, chicken broth, 1/4 tsp salt, and 2 cups of water, in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer, partially cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is tender, about 40 minutes.
- In a sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Swirl to coat the pan and sauté the onion, garlic, celery, and carrot until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the pears and sauté 2 minutes longer. Cover the pan, adjust the heat to medium-low, and cook the vegetables until crisp-tender, 3 minutes longer. Add the sage, thyme, and parsley and sauté 1 more minute. Remove from the heat.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked rice, sautéed vegetables and pears, walnuts and dried cranberries. Season to taste. Mound the rice mixture into the squash halves, dividing it evenly. Cut the remaining tablespoon of butter into small pieces and dot each stuffed squash with butter. Cover with foil. Bake at 350° F until heated through, about 20 minutes.
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The information presented here is for informational purposes only and was created by a team of US–registered dietitians and food experts. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements, making dietary changes, or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2014.