Stuffed butternut squash



In January, one of the seasonal veggies is the butternut squash (in fact all types of squashes).

And a very tasty and simple way of cooking it is by roasting it.

Don't bother peeling it. Just wash it thoroughly under the tap water (it might need a little scrub if some soil is stuck to it), cut it into two halves, scoop out the seeds, drizzle a bit of olive oil on top, season and here you are. Pop it into the oven to cook for 30-40 mins.

You can also stuff them in order to make a complete meal out of it. Try this recipe.

Ingredients (serving 2 to 4 people):

1 butternut squash

1 onion

1 garlic clove

150g minced lamb

150g cooked wholegrain rice (or cooked puy lentils, or pearl barley - whatever is left over in your fridge from a previous meal)

1 tsp of ras-el-hanout (Moroccan spice mix)

1 small handful of pine nuts

100ml of chicken stock

1 tbsp chopped parsley (optional)

1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander (optional)

1 tsp harissa (optional, for the lover of chilli!)

olive oil

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 180ºC.

Dice the onion and, in a large frying pan, gently fry it until translucent. Add the lamb, and the ras-el-hanout and carry on frying gently the meat.

After 5-8 mins of cooking, drain any excess of fat and add the chopped garlic, the rice and the pine nuts. Cook for another 5 mins. If it looks a bit dry, add a bit of chicken stock. Then remove from the stove, season and add the fresh herbs (parsley and coriander) and the harissa if you like it spicy . Keep aside.

Cut you butternut squash lengthways in two and scoop the seeds out. Place the halves into a oven-proof dish and stuff them with the lamb mixture. Drizzle a bit of olive oil on top. Place the dish in the oven to cook for 30-40 mins, until cooked (check by poking the butternut squash with a knife blade - it should dig in with no resistance).

Serve it with a salad.

Notes

You can try this recipe with any other kind of mince meat (turkey, beef - they will work really well).

For a vegetarian version, just mix lentils and rice. You can even add a some goat cheese or feta to it.


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