Roasted Acorn Squash with Wild Rice Pilaf
What makes acorn squash so delicious? Besides being naturally sweet, they are full of vitamin A, C and fiber, three important nutrients we all need more of.
3 medium acorn squash, halved and seeds removed*
salt and pepper
3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 1/2 cups brown basmati rice, or combination or brown rice and wild rice
3 cups water or homemade chicken stock
1 shallot, minced
2 stalks celery, chopped fine
1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh sage or 1 tablespoon dried sage
1/3 cup dried unsweetened cherries
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place cut acorn squash on a baking sheet, cut side up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and brush with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Roast in the oven 45 minutes to an hour, depending on how big the squash are. They are done when you can easily pierce them with a fork. Remove from the oven.
- Meanwhile, make the rice. Boil the water or stock with a teaspoon of salt. When the water is boiling, add the rice, bring the heat down to a simmer and cover the pot. Cook for 45 minutes, then turn off the heat and let the rice stand for 15 minutes.
- In a large sauté pan, heat the rest of the olive oil on medium heat. Add the onion and celery and a pinch of salt and pepper and sauté for 5 minutes, or until soft. Turn off the heat and add the herbs, cherries and pecans. Toss in the rice and combine.
- Add the rice mixture to the acorn squash. Divide the cheese evenly over the squash and place back in the oven for 5 minutes. Serve hot.
* A sharp knife is essential in cutting winter squash. Make sure you have a good sharp knife.
Copyright Heather Carey, MS 2013
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