Autumn, Dinner Ideas
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Quinoa Stuffed Carnival Squash

Fall screams for squash. This is one of the most versatile ingredients a cook can use. With so many varieties, and so many flavour profiles, the combinations are endless. Here are a few ways you can cook squash:

  • Go sweet and bake a delicious pumpkin inspired pie. Switch it up and use butternut squash and sweet potato!
  • Use as a starter for fall soups. Try our Smokey Sweet Potato Leek Soup.
  • Make a thick puree as a base for lamb or pork.
  • Roast and slice into rings for a delicious side.
  • Roast and stuff like we did here for a complete meal.

This is a delicious and hearty Carnival squash, stuffed with quinoa, bacon, leeks, mushrooms, and blue cheese. Carnival squash is me new favorite discovery! I picked this up while looking for acorn squash (with no luck…), and was pleasantly surprised by the buttery sweet texture it gives when roasted. Add to that bacon and blue cheese, and this is quite the decadent meal!

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RECIPE

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 Carnival Squash
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 5 strips of bacon
  • 1 leek, finely sliced
  • 1/2 cremini mushrooms
  • 50g blue cheese
  • Parsley, for garnish
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • salt
  • pepper

Method:

  1. Begin by preheating the oven to 350 farenheit.
  2. Prepare the squash by slicing in half, against the rings. Scoop out the seeds and discard. Score the inner sides of the squash, and evenly distribute olive oil amongst the 4 halves. Massage into the flesh using your fingers, and top with salt and pepper. Place face down on a cookie try, and roast for 30 minutes.
  3. While the squash is roasting, prepare the filling. Bring 2 cups of water to boil on medium-high heat. Drizzle with olive oil and add 1 cup dry quinoa. Turn heat down to medium and let cook until water is absorbed, about 10 minutes.
  4. In a large saucepan, cook the bacon over medium heat. Discard most of the fat. Remove bacon from the pan and set aside to slide into small squares. Add the leeks into the remaining bacon fat and sautee for 5 minutes, until browned. Add back the bacon with finely diced mushrooms to the pan and sautee mixture for an additional 2 – 3 minutes.
  5. Add vegetables to quinoa, season with basil, thyme, cayenne, salt, and pepper.
  6. Finish off the by crumbling in the blue cheese.
  7. Remove squash from the oven. It should be deeply browned around the edges. Scoop in 1/2 plus some of the filling into each squash. Garnish with fresh parsley and enjoy hot!
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Two food lovers unite to share our current concoctions and latest obsessions. A flavourful savourist vs. the dessert loving vegetarian. Follow us along on our food journey.

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