I LOVE Halloween! It's my favorite holiday of the year (the only holiday I acknowledge, actually). Witches, black cats, candy corn, creepy music, costumes - what's not to love? I've been Rima the Jungle Girl for Halloween since I discovered the character because - how could I not be? People usually don't get it, though, and think I'm just trying to be a version of myself. Sigh. Here's the story of Rima the Jungle Girl, if you're interested (scroll down past the biographical crap about me). Anyway, let's get to the squash!
Another one of my favorite things about this time of year is getting to experiment with all different kinds of squash! In my Farm Fresh to You box, I got two sweet dumpling squash. I searched around for a delish vegan recipe for inspiration and found there was a general lack of attention paid to this delectable autumn character in the way of vegan masterpieces. So I set out to create one.
Creating the Recipe
I wanted to create something with a bit of sweetness as sweet dumpling squash (as the name suggests) is sweet and is typically roasted with maple sugar and can be eaten as a dessert. We were having this as the main course so I took a spin on that.
First, I roasted the squash normally with olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. Meanwhile, I created a Thanksgiving-stuffing inspired quinoa that includes apples and celery. It's gluten-free! (You can use the recipe by itself for a vegan thanksgiving side dish!). Then I stuffed the squash with the quinoa and roasted it up some more. So simple and so satisfying!
This meal is sure to please the pickiest of eaters and can be modified in countless ways. Get creative and share your variations & suggestions in the comments section! I love to hear your feedback. And please share with friends and family.
Your family or guests will be impressed by your festive and seemingly challenging preparations and you will feel smug, knowing how simple and quick it was to prepare!
Everyone we will feel:
Happy, Warm, Fulfilled, Joyful & Grateful!
You can really switch any squash in for this dish, or mix and match them for fun variations. It's perfect for a fall dinner party as a side dish. Buy a bunch of small pumpkins and double or triple the stuffing recipe. Let me know if you do and don't forget to post on Instagram and tag me - @rima_danielle!
Happy Witching, friends!
Sweet Dumpling Squash filled with Quinoa Apple Stuffing
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes
A festive and easy recipe to wow guests and experiment with Fall's bounty of squash varieties. This recipe is simple enough for the newbie chef but unique enough for the seasoned culinary expert who's crowd has come to expect a lot.
Author: Rima the Jungle Girl
Recipe type: Main Dish, Appetizer
Cuisine: Vegan, Gluten Free
Serves: 2 - 6 people (about 1 - 2 people per squash based on desired serving size, quinoa recipe can fill about 6. If you have less, serve the quinoa on the side or under like I did.)
- 1 - 3 sweet dumpling squash (or other stuffing squash)
- Olive oil
- Sea salt
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
- 2 cups organic vegetable broth (I use homemade!), split in 1 cup, 1/2 cup, 1/2 cup
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup of diced celery
- 1 apple (red or green), cored, diced
- 1 medium white onion, diced
- 2 gloves garlic
- Small handful of fresh sage, chopped (or 1 tsp dry)
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary (about 1 tsp to 1 tbs), (or 1 tsp dry)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- First, clean the squash by washing the outside well. Chop the tops off (like you're carving a pumpkin, you can even use a pumpkin carving tool) & reserve the tops. Clean the seeds out. Rinse everything with water and pat dry with a paper towel.
- Rub inside and outside of squash and the tops with olive oil, sea salt & pepper.
- Place tops & squash upside on a baking side lined with parchment paper & place in the oven.
- Roast for 30 minutes while you make the quinoa. (Note: Quinoa will be ready by the time squash is done, and you stuff & roast for 10 more minutes, so don't freak out!)
- In a medium sauce pan, bring 1 cup of the veggie broth to a boil.
- Add quinoa, return to a boil and let simmer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn the heat off but DON'T REMOVE THE LID. Let the quinoa steam for 10 minutes while you make the vegetable mix.
- While quinoa is cooking, heat olive oil in a medium sauté pan. Sauté onions and celery for 5 - 10 minutes on low heat.
- Turn heat up to medium and add garlic, apples, herbs & 1/2 cup of broth. Sauté for 5 more minutes pr so until quinoa is done steaming.
- Add quinoa and remaining 1/2 cup broth and let quinoa infuse with the veggies as it soaks up the broth.
- Squash should be almost done. Check them - they should be browning and soft.
- Turn the squash over & stuff the squash with the quinoa mixture (I used a miso spoon), being careful not to break the squash.
- Return to oven & roast for 10 more minutes or so.
- Add remaining quinoa to a glass pan and bake alongside the squash.
- Serve immediately atop of remaining quinoa, if any, and enjoy!
- On top of a bed of the quinoa with a yummy, festive salad on the side.
- As an appetizer for a large group.
- With a pumpkin ale!