Black-eyed Pea Stuffed Squash

stuffed acorn squash

Don’t you love mixing flavors and textures in food? I do! If you don’t this recipe may not be for you, BUT it is delicious, so you might want to give your taste buds a new experience with this one!

It takes about an hour from start to finish. Most of that time is while the squash is baking, so don’t let the time scare you. This is super simple to make!

Preheat over to 400 degrees.

What do you need?

  • 2 acorn squashes, halved crosswise and seeded (this would work with other squash -spaghetti, delicata, etc.)
  • 2 Tbl olive oil (divide this in half)
  • A little salt (to taste)
  • 1 C of cooked black-eyed peas (I start with dry, so I cook them first; if you use canned, just open and drain them)
  • 1 C of cooked farro (you could use another grain; maybe you have leftover brown rice or barley in the fridge)
  • 1 C finely chopped red bell pepper (or another color if you prefer)
  • 1 Tbl fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 – 2 oz. of goat cheese, crumbled (optional) OR grated parmesan
  • Fresh chopped flat leaf parsley (amount is up to you!)

Line a baking dish with foil for easier clean up. Place squash halves in the lined dish cut sides up, and brush with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add a little salt and pepper. Bake for 45 minutes or until you can pierce with a fork. This will vary on size so start checking on them around 30 minutes.

While they are baking, get going on the filling. Saute the pepper in a skillet over medium heat until it starts to soften. Add the black-eyed peas and the farro and mix. Add the thyme, sherry vinegar, smoked paprika and pepper. Let them all cook in the skillet for several minutes. The smell will be amazing because of the smoked paprika!

When the squash are done, fill each half with some of the filling. Drizzle a bit of the remaining olive oil on. Add the goat cheese or parmesan cheese if you are using it. Add some more cracked black pepper.

Pop them back in the over for 10 – 15 minutes.

Remove and add fresh parsley.

Enjoy!

First Fall Dinner!

I have been creating dishes with tomatoes, squash, zucchini, cucumbers, peppers, beans and basil for several weeks now. As much as I love all that, I must admit that the taste buds have been craving some fall flavors. I teased them with a sweet potato last week, but that is about all I have ventured into so far thjs fall.

Yesterday however was a very cool, cloudy day. I had jeans on, a long sleeve shirt and even had to shut the windows to get the chill out.  Football was also on the schedule to watch last night. And then it all came together. Thanks to daughter Rachael and a late text message she sent me for a over the top Acorn Squash Recipe from Guy Fieri, I was on my way to releasing fall in my kitchen!

You halve and hollow out the acorn squash ,add a bit of olive oil, S&P and they are ready for roasting. One of the first things I loved about this recipe is that you use the seeds also. While the squash is roasting, you roast the seeds to sprinkle on top at the end. These roasted up beautifully.

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In the meantime, you prep your filling. It is a delectable mix of cabbage, peppers, onions, garlic, mushrooms and seasonings. (don’t forget to get the full recipe here) I did make a couple of tweaks– I added 1 tsp of fennel, because I really love fennel with cabbage. I also sauteed the cabbage a bit longer. I wanted it to caramelize a bit— it was totally worth the extra time!

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This cabbage mixture is so good! Hubby said we need to have it as a side with many things. This would go great with sausage or pork chops; or with veggies like sweet potatoes and green beans. It was delish! I am really happy that we had some of the filling left over–it may be lunch today!

You fill the squash up, add some goat cheese and the roasted seeds and pop it under the broiler for a few.

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Hit it with a bit of parsley on the way to the table and it is FANTASTIC!

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Today I am back to green beans, basil and tomatoes. BUT NO complaints here! I love these things and will love them in the coming months when I am tiring of fall cuisine and need to open up my summer taste buds.

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Happy Unleashing your taste buds today. What’s for dinner?

FGU