Autumn Acorn Squash

Every year when Fall rolls around, I see all sorts of recipes for acorn squash. They usually involve tomato sauce and just don’t sound very appealing to me. The whole squash/tomato combo isn’t my favorite. So I decided to mix a few ingredients that I thought would go well together, stuff it into an acorn squash, and cover it with garlic cheese sauce. This recipe was the result!

Autumn Acorn Squash

Serves 4:

Ingredients:

  • 2 acorn squash
  • 1 lb. sweet Italian sausage(casings removed)
  • 1 med. yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 2/3 cup water
  • 1 box of wild rice mix
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 3 tsp. chicken base
  • 1 Tbsp. parsley
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

Pre-heat over to 450 degrees.

  1. Slice your acorn squash in half, and scoop out and discard the seeds.

2. Slice a little bit of the rind off of the back of your squash so they sit steady and don’t roll around.

3. Drizzle a little olive oil over the cut sides of your squash, rub it into the squash, and sprinkle with a generous pinch of salt and pepper.

4. Set the squash on a cookie sheet, cut side facing up, and roast in the over for 45 minutes. They should be fork tender when done.

5. While they are roasting, place the sliced almonds into a large frying pan over medium heat. Stir them occasionally until they begin to turn golden brown. Remove from pan and set aside.

6. Into the same frying pan, crumble sausage until golden brown. When it is no longer pink, throw in your diced onion. Cook until onions are soft, and sausage is well browned. Remove from heat and set aside.

7. In a medium sized pot, prepare your wild rice mix according to the package directions. In this case the package called for 1 Tbsp. butter, and 1 2/3 cup of water. After bringing the mixture to a boil, I covered it and let it simmer for 25 minutes. I used the Rice-a-Roni brand Long Grain and Wild Rice mix because the seasoning packet has a great flavor and it’s easy to find at most grocery stores. I’ve tried a couple other brands and do not like the flavor very much.

8. When the rice is done cooking, mix it with the sausage and onion mixture, then throw the toasted almonds in as well. This will be your stuffing mix.

9. When the acorn squash are done roasting, remove from the oven and fill the squash with the sausage/rice/almond mixture. Sprinkle with a bit of parmesan cheese if desired.

10. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake filled squash for 10 minutes.

11. While the squash is baking, prepare the garlic cream sauce: In a medium size saucepan(I used the same one I had cooked my rice in), melt 3 Tbsp. butter over med-low heat. Add the minced garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Add 3 Tbsps, flour and stir until mixture is smooth and beginning to turn golden in color 3-5 minutes. Slowly stir in 2 cups of milk, whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Add 1 tsp. parsley, 1/2 cup shredded parmesan, a large pinch of black pepper, and 3 tsp. chicken base. Increase heat to medium, stirring often for 5 minutes. Sauce will thicken as it cooks. Add salt and pepper to taste.

12. When the stuffed squash are finished cooking, pour the garlic cream sauce over and enjoy!

If a dish can feel like Fall, this is it! We scraped bits of the squash out as we ate the rice mixture and the flavors all went together beautifully. I poured extra cheese sauce on my squash as I ate, because I couldn’t resist. If you’re looking for a yummy, filling meal, this will hit the spot!

Thanks for reading!

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