Quinoa is cooked in a miso broth then tossed with swiss chard, persimmons, pine nuts and sage. Acorn squash is used to the fullest as its flesh is roasted for the filling, its shell is used as an innovative serving dish and its seeds are sautéed with smoked paprika to top the dish with a flavorful crunch. This recipe comes to us from Stephanie, The Recipe Renovator.
- a little oil, to prepare the baking pan & squash seeds
- 1 acorn squash
- 2 cups water
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 cup red quinoa, rinsed
- 1/2 teaspoons miso paste*
- 1/2 cup swiss chard, chopped
- 2 small persimmons, cored and diced
- 3 sage leaves, minced
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
*found Asian specialty markets or the Asian section of most grocery stores.
Preheat an oven to 350°. Prepare a baking pan with a light coating of oil.
Wash the squash and slice off each end. Cut the squash in half crosswise. Scoop out the seeds and set aside in a small bowl of water.
Place the squash, cut-side down, in the prepared baking pan. Bake for about 30-40 minutes, or until the squash flesh is soft. Leave the oven on.
While the squash is baking, rinse the seeds clean of any stringy squash flesh. Place a small saucepan with 1 of the cups water and 2 of the teaspoons of salt over high heat. Bring to a boil, add the squash seeds, turn the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
In a saucepan over high heat, dissolve the miso paste in the remaining cup of water. Add the quinoa, cover, and bring the quinoa miso water mixture to a boil. Turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer the quinoa for 15 minutes, uncovered, or until the water has been absorbed. Let the quinoa sit, still covered, for 10 minutes more, uncover and fluff with a fork.
Place the chopped chard in a large bowl. Add the cooked quinoa, diced persimmons, minced sage, pine nuts and parmesan cheese to the bowl. Season with the chipotle chili powder, cumin, pepper and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir to combine.
When the squash is roasted, flip it right side up using a towel or hot pads. Scoop out the cooked squash with a grapefruit spoon, leaving about 1/2 inch of squash flesh and taking care not to poke through the squash shell. Add the cooked squash to the large bowl and mix.
Pack 1 cup of persimmon quinoa squash into each squash shell half and place both stuffed squash halves back in the baking pan.
Drizzle the soaked squash seeds with a little olive oil and place next to the squash shells in the pan. Sprinkle the squash seeds with the smoked paprika.
Bake both the stuffed squash and seeds for about 15-20 minutes, or until the squash filling is hot and the parmesan cheese has melted. Top the persimmon quinoa filling with the paprika toasted squash seeds and enjoy.