Monday, October 18, 2010

Sweet Dumpling Squash with Orange-Scented Quinoa Stuffing

I have a growing collection of cookbooks, and these have been getting me through this year: helping me use our CSA share, feed myself and sometimes others, and get better at cooking.  When I'm not sure what to do with something, I scan my shelf and pick someone I think will be able to help me.  When I started getting a ton of winter squash I turned to several sources - Deborah Madison's Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone (look out for the Winter Squash Soup with Lemongrass and Coconut Milk) and Terry Walters' Clean Food in particular.  Clean Food is full of unusual ingredients, which is sometimes exactly what I'm looking for.  A search for "sweet dumpling squash" in that super natural recipe search on my sidebar yields no results (at least that was the case last time I checked).  Clean Food has a recipe, though.

My mom went to Florida with her friend a few weeks ago.  I wanted to make dinner on the day she came home - she got in while I was chopping up stuff in her kitchen and immediately started to help me.  It was as if she had just gone out to the post office or something, not to Florida for a whole week.  It was very nice to have some company in the kitchen and to have a delicious, healthy dinner with my family.  I chose to make the Sweet Dumpling Squash with Orange-Scented Quinoa Stuffing.  Surprisingly, it was a big hit.  My family are not the most open to the type of natural, nourishing food that I love.  (I was just asked by both my sisters, on the same day but at different times, "Can we have normal food for Thanksgiving this year?")  But everyone loved this.  Even my super picky dad ate it, although I was barely able to convince him to even try the squash.  My mom was thrilled with it and picked out sweet dumpling squash the next time we got our CSA share.

This was a very filling, delicious meal.  The bites of squash and stuffing together are the key to success.  For someone who can feel complete without a meat product, this is a satisfying meal - the quinoa provides all the protein you need - but of course my family needed sausage and pork chops alongside.  This could be made into a side dish for many if you cut the squash into wedges and pile some of the stuffing on top.  I also did not (obviously, from the picture) use an entire squash per person as the recipe called for - half was more than enough for all of us and there was less waste too.  We had a ton of stuffing left over, though!  I would probably make this again someday.

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