Stuffed Acorn Squash
This recipe is made with squash, millet and spinach, making for a rich and tasty meal that’s safe for several food allergies. It’s based on a recipe by Cybele Pascal from her book Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking, which provides enticing recipes that steer clear of the top allergens: dairy, eggs, wheat, soy, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish and sesame. Yields 4 servings.
1⁄2 cup millet
1 1⁄2 cups water
2 small acorn squash, halved and seeded
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for brushing squash
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1⁄2 cup chopped sweet or yellow onion
2 large cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1⁄4 cup dried cranberries
1 bag (5 to 6 ounces) baby spinach
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1⁄4 cup shelled hemp seeds, toasted
4 heaping teaspoons fine breadcrumbs
4 heaping teaspoons butter or olive oil
1. Combine the millet and water in a small saucepot over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer for 18 minutes, or until the water is absorbed. (Do not stir the millet or it will become creamy. You want it to cook up like rice, and refraining from stirring will accomplish this.)
2. Meanwhile, lightly brush the insides of the squash halves with a little olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place face down on a large microwave-safe dish. Cover and cook in the microwave for 16 minutes, or until tender.
3. While squash is cooking, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large, heavy pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes, or until tender. Add the garlic and cranberries, and cook and stir for 1 additional minute. Add the spinach and cook, stirring often, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Stir in the vinegar and sugar, and season with salt and pepper. Cook and stir for another minute. Remove from heat, and stir in the hemp seeds.
4. Preheat the broiler on high.
5. Once the millet is cooked, fluff it lightly with a fork. Combine 1 cup of millet with the spinach mixture and toss.
6. Put the squash halves, cut side up, in a broiler-safe pan or on a rimmed baking tray. Divide the filling evenly among the squash halves, mounding it slightly. Top each with 1 heaping teaspoon breadcrumbs and 1 heaping teaspoon butter. Broil 8 inches from the heat source for 4 to 5 minutes, or until nicely browned.
NOTE: To toast hemp seeds, heat a small frying pan …….