Before I made this recipe I had never cooked acorn squash before. I would walk past it in the grocery store and be intrigued, it looked so pretty, but I really didn't know what to do with it. I decided something had to be done about that this week and holy moly am I glad!!! These sweet and savory squash bowls are a SERIOUS party in your mouth!
21 Day Fixers I estimate 1/2 an acorn squash to be 2 green, 1 red, 1/8 blue, 1/4 yellow
2 acorn squash
16 oz Italian turkey sausage ( can buy crumbled or if you buy links, remove meat from sausage casings)
2 tbsp EVOO
2 cloves garlic
1/3 cup yellow onion, diced
1 1/2 tsps red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp fresh thyme
1 tbsp each chopped fresh basil, parsley and oregano
1/2 cup roasted red peppers, chopped
1/2 cup canned fire roasted diced tomatoes
1/2 cup drained canned or jarred artichoke hearts, chopped
2 cups fresh baby spinach
Salt and pepper as needed
4 small basil leaves (for presentation)
1 slice whole wheat bread
1/2 cup parmesan cheese finely grated
4 tbsp water
1 tsp EVOO
Toast whole wheat bread crumbs. In a small mini food processor blend until finely chopped. Fry in extra virgin olive oil. Toss with salt and set aside.
Wash, halve and scrape the inside of the squash. Place the squash in a microwave safe shallow dish with a little water (about half an inch deep). Microwave on high for 7-10 mins or until fork tender. If you do not have a large enough dish, place halves in smaller individual shallow bowls. May take longer to microwave (mine took about 13 mins each). Leave in microwave until ready to fill.
In a large pan, saute in olive oil the crumbled turkey sausage, onions garlic, red pepper flakes. When the sausage is almost cooked through add the roasted red peppers, fire roasted tomatoes, artichoke hearts and fresh herbs (basil, parsley, thyme and oregano). Cook through. If too much liquid in pan, cook until mostly reduced. If meat looks dry, add a small amount of water to pan. Add spinach and toss gently until wilted. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Remove from heat.
Place squash halves on a lightly greased aluminium foil. Distribute filling among acorn halves and sprinkle with black pepper. Add 1 tbsp of water to each squash. Coat with fresh breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.
Broil for just a couple of minutes until cheese is lightly browned. Watch closely so they don't burn!
Top with fresh basil leaves, serve and enjoy!
**If you make extra for lunches, to reheat, preferably place on a lightly greased aluminum foil and bake at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until heated through.
The following recipe is adapted from http://www.thekitchn.com/quick-weeknight-meals-recipe-5-96858