Necessity is the mother of all invention. And this week, our necessity is clearing out all the food from our apartment.
As mentioned previously in this blog, my husband and I are doing a pantry challenge to empty our cupboards before we pack everything up and move out of state. We don’t have room to pack up a full pantry into our car, and that’s all that’s coming with us right away. So we eat it, throw it away, or give it away. I’m fine with eating what’s left in kitchen. I like a challenge. But the dear husband is a little less amused and missing one of his favorite parts about moving. Yesterday he asked me, “Hey, when do we get to start eating out all the time?” Never. 🙂
I take his preference for eating out at crunch time as a challenge itself. Can I make something so good out of what’s left that he’d rather have that over the Indian buffet or the Afghan restaurant around the corner?
The answer is yes. The answer is this recipe. The first time I made it, he insisted that I write it down immediately and we talked about dinner parties with friends. It’s that good.
It started with a small acorn squash my husband snagged at the Baltimore Farmers’ Market and Bazaar for $1. You can’t beat that! I also had some old bread in the freezer and a box of Morningstar maple flavored faux sausage patties that are not allowed to go to waste. Here’s how it came together:
Stuffed and Roasted Acorn Squash
- 1 acorn squash
- 1 tbsp butter, divided
- 1/2 cup broth/stock, warmed (I used 1/4 a bouillon cube added to boiling water)
- 1/2 carrot, finely diced
- 2 tbsp finely diced onion
- 1 slice toast or dry bread
- 1/4 cup shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 tsp sage
- 1/4 tsp rosemary
- 1/4 tsp thyme
- 1/4 tsp garlic salt
- 2 Morningstar maple flavored sausages, diced
1. Preheat the oven to 400°
2. Split the acorn squash in half and scoop out the seeds from each half. If the halves do not sit nicely on their own, slice off a bit of the outer skin to help it sit still. Melt half of the butter into the broth and set aside. Place the other half of the butter in the two halves of the squash to help cook and flavor the flesh.
3. Set the squash halves in a deep baking dish with a lid.
4. Finely dice the bread or toss large pieces in a blender or food processor to roughly chop. Combine the carrot, onion, bread, pistachios, cranberries, sage, rosemary, thyme, garlic salt, and Morningstar maple flavored sausages. Mix thoroughly. Add the broth with butter and stir.
5. Spoon the dressing into the squash halves. Pour the excess into the baking dish around the squash halves. Cover the dish with the lid, and bake for 35 minutes.
Lucky for me, the husband picked up two acorn squashes at the market that day, so we’ve actually had this twice! Both times made the meat-eating husband really happy. He commented that it’s a fantastic meal to get to eat during the last week of packing! Better than bad pizza and beer!
Update: the husband would like me to post his photo, as he believes his photo is better. While this may be true, he failed to send it to me from his phone until after I wrote the post, which is why it did not make the original post. Please comment and tell him how beautiful his photo is. 😉
That’s one of my biggest goals also, to make dishes better than restaurants so that my sweetie doesn’t want to eat out as much either! Thus far, I’ve mainly mastered baked goods, but I’m hoping to move onto more substantial meals soon… Your stuffed squash looks amazing; maybe that recipe will keep us home an extra night or two!
Great idea! We have rando bread in the freezer from the old roommate and I have fake sausage/ground beef from the pumpkin. Looks like I have a meal idea for January! (If the market still has acorn squash that is.)
Totally do it! Best use of random bread. Definitely use some kind of nuts and some dried fruit. Other squashes might work well too if you can’t find acorn. Let me know how it turns out!