Acorn squash is a small, heart-shaped winter squash. Use a sharp chef’s knife and always wash your squash (and melon!) before cutting into it. You can make these ahead of time and reheat them in the oven (in a covered dish at 350 for 20-30 mins). This would make a great dish for Thanksgiving. The wild rice pilaf is delicious on its own – so save any leftovers for lunch!
Yield: 4 servings
- 2 acorn squash, halved, seeds removed
- 1 cup wild rice
- vegetable broth (optional)
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (sub walnuts)
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries (sub golden raisins, chopped dried apricots)
- 2 TB chopped fresh mint
- olive oil, salt & pepper
- Heat oven to 400 degrees. Slice off the stem end of the squash. Place the squash on the cutting board, stem end down. Place your chef’s knife at the tip of the squash and using a rocking motion, wedge the knife back and forth through the squash until it is cut in half. If the knife gets stuck, don’t force it. Carefully remove it from the squash, turn the squash around, and start the same motion, but from the other side. Use a spoon to remove the seeds and pulp from the cavities.
- Rub the cut-side of the squash liberally with olive oil and then season with salt and pepper. Place the squash cut-side down on a sheet pan. Roast for 25 minutes or until a knife is easily inserted through the skin, into the squash. Set aside.
- Bring 3 cups of water (or vegetable broth, or half broth/half water) to a boil. Add 1 cup wild rice to boiling water. Season generously with salt. Simmer rice for about 25 minutes or until the grains of rice have butterflied and the texture is chewy. Drain.
- In a mixing bowl, mix together the wild rice, pine nuts, cranberries, and mint. Dress with a splash of olive oil. If you seasoned your rice cooking water well, you may not need more salt and pepper. Taste and add more seasoning gradually.
- Spoon filling into roasted squash and serve.