T’is the season of the squash! It seems everywhere I look I’m finding all sorts of stuffed squash recipes, so I thought it was about time I posted my own. Stuffed squash is incredibly easy and simple to make, and there are endless ways to mix and match through spicing, vegetable combinations, and different grains and nuts. It’s a great meal to make when you don’t have a meal already planned, as its super easy to adjust based on what ingredients are available to you. (The amaranth could easily be swapped for cous cous or quinoa, and the veggies could be adjusted accordingly). Pair it with a salad, or even just eat is as a complete meal, and you are good to go!
This was my first time trying carnival squash (fresh from the farm!), and I was very pleased. I originally bought it for it’s prettily striped rind for decoration on my counter, but I knew I should eat it eventually. It does taste quite similar to butternut squash, but with a little less sweet, nuttier flavour. Although I’m no squash expert, I’ve read that choosing a squash that’s heavy for its size is the way to go, and it worked out great for me! So I’d definitely recommend keeping that in mind when choosing your own.
A lot of recipes ask for vegetable broth for cooking the grain in, but even the low sodium varieties are often still very high in sodium. For added flavour without the use of vegetable broth or bouillon, I like to saute my veggies in the pot I plan on using to cook my grain in, and add my water and grain right in once they are cooked. This way the grain can really absorb the flavours of the veggies. The walnuts were originally added as a garnish and weren’t going to be a main ingredient, but I ended up adding more once I took a bite because they added so much to the dish. So don’t skip out on them! Also, don’t feel the need to follow the recipe strictly, I just used vegetables I had in my fridge. It will work well with most vegetables (as long as you like the kinds you use!), so just use this as a guideline. :-) Happy squashing!
Curry Amaranth and Vegetable Stuffed Carnival Squash
- 1 medium sized carnival squash
- 1 cup dry amaranth
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup broccoli
- 1 leek
- 1 red pepper
- 1/4 red onion
- 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut off top of squash, remove seeds, and scrape clean. Place face down on pan with 1/4 inch of water. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until soft.
2. Chop up broccoli, leek, red pepper, and red onion. Saute chopped vegetables with minced garlic and olive oil in a medium sized pot over medium-high heat. Once cooked, add curry powder, water, and amaranth, cover, and let simmer over low heat for 15-20 minutes, or until all the water is absorbed.
3. Once the squash is cooked, remove from the oven. Spoon amaranth mixture inside squash, packing it down with the back of a spoon. Cut squash into desired amount of servings (the amaranth mixture should stick if packed tightly). Note: There may be extra amaranth. I just packed the extras away in the fridge to use the next day.
4. Sprinkle with chopped walnuts to serve and enjoy.