Stuffed Butternut Squash

Makes: 4 servings  Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 75 minutes  Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 large butternut squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium shallots, minced
  • 4 ounces mushrooms,  I used a mix of cremini, oyster, and shiitake
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup grain, I used Trader Joe's Harvest Grain Blend including couscous, orzo, baby garbanzo beans, and red quinoa (which I received from my Foodie Pen Pal last month!)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
  • pinch of salt
  • pepper
  • other seasonings to taste: I used South African Smoke seasoning blend from Trader Joe's

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°.  Slice squash in half and scoop out the seeds.  But don't throw them out!  I highly encourage doing {this} instead!  Place each half cut side down in a 9x13 pan and pour 1/2 inch of water in the bottom.  Place pan in the oven and bake until tender, about 45-60 minutes.  Once done, remove from oven and set aside.
  2. While the squash is cooking, rinse the grain mix thoroughly and place in a pot with 1 cup of water.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and let cook until the water is absorbed, about 12-15 minutes.  In a large skillet heat olive oil and add the garlic, mushrooms and shallots.  Saute until tender, about 8 minutes.
  3. Scoop out the butternut squash, leaving 1/4 - 1/2 inch on the sides and bottom.  Drain water from the pan and return the squash to the pan cut side up.
  4. Mash the squash and stir in the cheese.  Once quinoa, and the shallot/mushroom mixture is done add it to the squash.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Stir and taste for needed seasonings.
  5. Scoop filling evenly into the butternut squash halves.  Sprinkle the top with cheese and return to the oven.  Let bake for 10-15 minutes or until cheese has melted and the tops begin to brown.  Remove from oven, cut in half, and serve.
  6. Enjoy!