This hearty dinner creates delectable flavors by preparing four distinct foods simply to show off their best qualities and then contrasting them. Acorn squash is steamed, bulgur is soaked and chickpeas are sauteed before it’s tossed with fresh baby spinach and seasoned with lemon juice, cinnamon and paprika. This recipe comes to us from Jennifer of Eat Well Meal Plans.
- 1 cup bulgur*
- 2 medium acorn squash, cut in half & seeds removed
- 1 14.5 ounce can chick peas, drained, rinsed & dried
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 cups baby spinach
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
*found in the grain section of most grocery stores.
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the bulgur to the pot. Remove from heat, cover and soak for about 30 minutes, or until most of the water has been absorbed.
Place the seeded squash halves on a microwave-safe plate. Pour 1 teaspoon water in each of the 4 squash cavities. Microwave on high for 15 minutes, or until the squash’s flesh softens. Scoop the softened flesh from the outer shell and transfer it to a bowl.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the chickpeas and sauté, stirring often, for about 4 minutes, or until they start to brown. Set aside.
In the same pan, heat the remaining tablespoon of the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add squash by the spoonful, about 2 to 3 tablespoons per scoop. Cook for about 5 minutes on each side, or until lightly browned.
Drain any excess water from the bulgur and transfer it to a large serving bowl. Add the chickpeas, squash and baby spinach. Toss lightly to wilt the spinach. Season with the lemon juice, cinnamon, paprika, salt and pepper. Toss gently to combine and enjoy.