Stuffed Acorn Squash; Stuffed Bellies

I’ve seen several versions of stuffed acorn squash recipes floating around this season. Seeing as hearty dishes are a household staple, I decided to try my hand with some healthy modifications. This dish is extremely filling and feeds a village, with leftovers (if you can stop eating … ).

Here’s what you’ll need …

4 acorn squash
2 1/2 cups of Farro
1 box of vegetable stock
1 yellow onion
1 garlic bunch
1 large bunch of asparagus
1 crate of baby bella mushrooms
3 large carrots
Grated mozzarella cheese (or any cheese of your choice)

First, the farro. I was introduced to farro about two years ago and it’s become a regular grain in my diet. That being said, you could also use brown rice or barley with this recipe. While you can certainly cook with water, I prefer to cook with vegetable stock to enhance the grain flavor and texture. You’ll need to cook al dente, as you’ll finish the cooking process during the stuffed squash baking. The texture should be a bit chewy with a rich brown color, as seen below – a light layer of water should still be present.

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While the farro is cooking, chop and sauté your onion, garlic, asparagus, carrots, and mushrooms (add last to brown). You could use a myriad of vegetable combinations with this dish. I may try radishes next and substitute the asparagus with broccoli. You could also incorporate black beans and corn for a Southwestern feel. Really, it’s all about what you and your guests prefer in palate pleasures.

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Once your veggies have been caramelized (remember, we still need to bake), stir in the farro …

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We are ready to stuff! Halving acorn squashes is no delicate task and requires a large, sharp knife and lots of muscle. Once you’ve halved your squashes and scooped out all the seeds, stuff away! Add a teaspoon of butter to the bottom of each bowl to ensure the squash is primed for flavor absorption.

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Now for some oven lovin’. Bake at 400 degrees for about 25-30 minutes (oven personality applicable – check regularly for soft texture if you have a fiery one). Once baked, add your grated cheese on top and bake for another 3 minutes until the cheese has a nice browned crust on the edges.

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Voila! Scrape, mash, and mix away your acorn bowl ….

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And dig in …
The squash should peel from the skin easily with a fork, making an incredibly delectable flavor bowl of deliciousness – is that even a thing? It is now! You can serve this as individual bowls or combine everything together for a large family-style side bowl. Bonus – don’t think about feeling “guilty” over this indulgence … this is clean eating at its finest! Enjoy!

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