Carnival Acorn Squash Recipes
How to Make as Stuffed Carnival Acorn Squash
1 winter squash, like acorn, kabocha, red kuri, sweet dumpling, delicata, spaghetti or any other grapefruit-sized (or slightly larger) squash
2 to 3 cups of filling:
General amounts for filling — to equal 2 to 3 cups total:
1/2 to 1 cup protein — sausage, chicken, pork, tempeh, or baked tofu
1 to 2 cups veggies — onions, mushrooms, zucchini, peppers, greens
1/2 cup cooked grains and/or nuts — barley, quinoa, millet, farro, rice, walnuts, almonds, pecans
1/2 to 1 cup shredded cheese
1 to 3 teaspoons herbs or spices
Prepare the squash for roasting: Preheat the oven to 375°F with a rack in the lower-middle position. Slice the squash in half from stem to root and scoop out the seeds.
Transfer the squash to a baking dish: Place the squash halves cut-side-down in a baking dish and pour in enough hot water to fill the pan by about 1/4 inch. Cover the dish loosely with foil and place the dish in the oven.
Roast the squash: Roast the squash until very soft and tender when poked with a fork or paring knife, 30 to 50 minutes. Exact roasting time will depend on the size and variety of your squash.
Prepare the filling: While the squash is roasting, prepare the filling. Depending on the size of your squash, 2 to 3 cups of combined ingredients is usually sufficient. You can combine leftovers from other meals (cooked chicken, roasted vegetables, etc.) or you can prepare a fresh filling. Cook any raw meats and raw vegetables and combine all the ingredients in a bowl. Taste and adjust the spices, salt, and pepper to your liking.
Stuff the squash halves: Flip the cooked squash halves so they form bowls. Rub the inside with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Divide the filling between the halves — it’s fine to really stuff the wells and also to mound the filling on top.
Bake the stuffed squash halves until bubbly: Re-cover the pan with the foil and bake the halves for another 15 to 20 minutes until both are hot and bubbly. Top with extra cheese and serve immediately.
Stuffed Squash for a Crowd: This recipe is easily multiplied to feed whatever sized gathering you are hosting. The squashes and the fllling can also be prepped in advance and warmed just before serving. One half of a squash is typically a good main course meal for an adult.
Carnival Acorn Squash with Apples and Thyme
· 2 carnival or acorn squash
· 2 tablespoons melted butter
· 4 sprigs fresh thyme
· 4 small or 2 large tart apples
· ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
· 2 tablespoons brown sugar
Heat the oven to 375°. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Place on a cookie sheet and brush with a little of the butter and season with a little salt. Place a thyme sprig in each half and bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, mix together the apples, the remaining melted butter, the sugar and the cinnamon. Remove the squash from the oven.
Fill each squash with the apple mixture. Put them back in the oven for 15-20 minutes more, or until the squash and the apples are soft and caramelized.
Roasted Acorn Squash Salad
· 1 medium large carnival squash
· seeds from the squash
· olive oil salt, and pepper
· 4 cups of assorted seasonal greens
· 1/2 cup crumbled soft cheese
· 2 Tbsp olive oil
· 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
· 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
· salt and pepper
Preheat your oven to 200 C / 400 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silpat.
Split the squash in half and scrape the seeds out. Split the halves in to quarters, brush with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Set on the lined baking sheet and slide into the oven to roast for about 10 minutes.
Rinse the squash seeds under water, pat dry, then put them in a bowl and drizzle with some olive oil. Remove the squash from the oven, add the seeds to the baking sheet, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and replace in the oven.
Roast everything for an additional 20-30 minutes, until the squash is golden and tender and the seeds are golden and crisp.
While the squash is roasting, whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper. Toss the dressing with the greens.
When the squash is done, remove from the oven and set onto serving plates. Spoon the salad into the hollow of the squash, then sprinkle with roasted seeds and crumbles of cheese. Serve.
Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash
- 2 acorn, delicata, dumpling, or carnival squash, cut in half through the stem and seeded
- 2 teaspoons olive oil, plus more for rubbing the squash and oiling the dish
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 ounces chorizo or sweet sausage, crumbled or cut into small pieces
- 1 cup chopped leeks (1 small leek)
- 1 cup chopped apple (1 to 2 apples)
- Freshly ground pepper
- 2 cups sliced tender greens (spinach, tatsoi, kale, Swiss chard), cut into ribbons
- 4 fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped
- 2 cups cooked millet, rice, or quinoa
- 1/2 cup grated Cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 375° F. Rub the flesh of each squash half with olive oil, and oil an ovenproof dish or baking sheet. Sprinkle the whole baking dish with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Lay the squash flesh side down in the dish and bake until it is very tender when pricked with a fork, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the squash from the oven and raise the oven temperature to 425°F.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chorizo and fry until browned. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add the leeks to the hot oil and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the apple, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper, and cook for another minute. Add the greens, sage, cooked grains, and reserved chorizo. Cook for another minute, stirring to combine, and remove from heat. Taste, and adjust the salt and pepper if needed.
Turn the cooked squash over in the baking dish so it is flesh side up. (Be careful, as steam will escape when you turn it.) Scoop the filling into the cavity of each squash half, piling it into a mountain so that it holds as much as possible. Sprinkle with cheese and bake until the cheese melts, about 10 minutes.
Chopped fried bacon is a great substitute for the chorizo.
Crumbled corn bread is a delicious substitute for the grain. When you make corn bread and have a few pieces left over, just crumble them into a container and freeze them for your next batch of stuffed winter squash.
If you don’t have leeks, substitute a medium red onion.
If you don’t have Cheddar, substitute Parmesan or other sharp cheese.
Pasta with Acorn Squash and Tomatoes
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup sliced shallots
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes
- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds peeled, cubed or shredded butternut or other winter squash, about 5 cups
- 8 ounces ziti or penne cut pasta
- Freshly chopped parsley or Parmesan, for garnish
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Put olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots, garlic, and pepper flakes and cook for about 1 minute; add tomatoes and squash, and cook with some salt and pepper.
When squash is tender, about 10 minutes for shreds, 15 or so for small cubes, cook the pasta until it is tender. Combine the sauce and pasta, and serve, garnished with parsley or Parmesan.