Over at the Back Burner this week we are supporting Food Day.  Food Day is a nationwide celebration and movement towards more healthy eating.  We are really excited to see what the team brings to the table, and think you should be as well.  For instance, we are serving up these amazing stuffed acorn squash.  Perfect as a light meal and even better as a side dish.

Are you participating in Food Day?  If so, what are you doing to help make a difference?

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Recipe:  Acorn squash stuffed with pancetta, quinoa and walnuts

** serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 small acorn squash
  • ½ cup pancetta, diced
  • 1 medium shallot, finely minced
  • 12 sage leaves, finely minced
  • 2½ cups quinoa, precooked
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted and broken into small pieces
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

How To:

  1. Cut a very small portion off of the bottom of the squash, so that they can stand up in a baking pan. Then cut off about 1/4” off of the top, keeping a little hat. Scoop out of the seeds and a slight portion of the flesh.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400. Place the squash in a baking dish.
  3. Cook the quinoa according to the directions on the package. Once cooked set aside.
  4. While the quinoa is cooking toast the walnuts. Scatter the walnuts over a cookie sheet. Slide into the oven and cook for 5 minutes. Stir and then cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Once cooled, place a clean dish towel over the nuts and lightly crush with a rolling pin.
  5. In a large frying pan over medium heat cook the pancetta until lightly browned. Add the shallot and sage leaves. Stir and cook for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the quinoa and toasted walnuts. Season with the salt and pepper.
  6. Lightly stuff the acorn squash with the pancetta/quinoa mixture. Using a pastry brush lightly coat the outside of the acorn squash. Fill the baking dish with about 1/4” inch of water.
  7. Slide into the oven. Bake for 45 – 60 minutes. You want the squash to be slightly soft and cooked through, as well as a little golden on the tops. Remove from the oven and let set for 5 minutes.
  8. Serve.
  9. Eat.

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