Picture this: tender, roasted acorn squash halves, generously filled with a mouthwatering blend of earthy Portobello mushrooms and aromatic sage. This dish is the epitome of autumn's warm embrace, bringing comfort and flavor to your table.
The sweetness of the roasted squash perfectly complements the savory, herb-infused stuffing, creating a delightful harmony of tastes and textures. With every forkful, you'll experience the essence of fall, making Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash a must-try seasonal favorite for cozy dinners and holiday gatherings alike.
Just a handful of ingredients and a bit of roasting time...
The beauty of this dish lies not only in its taste but also in its simplicity. Whether you're an experienced chef or a kitchen novice, preparing Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash is a breeze. Just a handful of ingredients and a bit of roasting time, and you'll have a stunning, wholesome meal ready to impress your family and friends. Plus, it's a versatile canvas for creativity - consider adding some toasted nuts, cranberries, or a drizzle of balsamic glaze for that extra layer of flavor. So, embrace the flavors of the season and make this dish your go-to comfort food during those crisp, fall evenings.
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 60-75 minutes
- Just a handful of ingredients and a bit of roasting time...
- Ingredients needed to make Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- How to make Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- Variations on the Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe
- Storage for the Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- Top tips for making Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- Outstanding Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
Ingredients needed to make Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- 3 T. extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 3-4 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 4 oz. pancetta, diced
- 1½ lbs. Portobello mushrooms, roughly chopped
- ½ medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 c. green lentils, cooked
- 1 ½ T. fresh sage, finely chopped
- ¼ c. dry red wine
- ⅓ c. dates, roughly chopped
- ¼ c. walnuts, chopped
- ¼ c. Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
Non-stick cooking spray
How to make Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- Position oven rack to center position, then preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a large baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- Place the acorn squash halves cut side up in prepared baking dish and brush cut edges with one tablespoon olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Place baking dish on center rack in pre-heated oven and roast for 40 minutes, or until the squash is fork tender.
- In the meantime, heat the remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add minced garlic and pancetta and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly browned, approximately 2-3 minutes.
- Add chopped mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until they start to brown, approximately 4-5 minutes. Add sliced onions and continue cooking, stirring once or twice, for another 3-4 minutes.
- Stir green lentils, fresh sage, and red wine into the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens, approximately 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the chopped dates and toasted walnuts. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Set aside.
- When ready, remove cooked squash from oven and cool slightly before filling each half with the Portobello mushroom mixture. Sprinkle each half with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
- Return stuffed squash to oven for another 5-10 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese starts to melt. Remove from oven and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Variations on the Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe
Here are 10 delightful variations to experiment with for your Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash recipe:
- Quinoa Boost: Mix cooked quinoa into your stuffing for added protein and a nutty flavor.
- Nutty Crunch: Add chopped toasted nuts like pecans or walnuts for extra texture and richness.
- Dried Fruit Sweetness: Incorporate dried fruits such as cranberries, raisins, or apricots for a touch of natural sweetness.
- Cheesy Delight: Sprinkle grated Parmesan or Gruyère cheese on top before baking for a cheesy twist.
- Sausage Savory: Brown some crumbled sausage and include it in the stuffing for a hearty, savory upgrade.
- Herb Medley: Experiment with a mix of fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, and parsley to enhance the stuffing's flavor profile.
- Spicy Kick: Spice things up with a dash of red pepper flakes or minced jalapeños for a hint of heat.
- Balsamic Drizzle: Finish with a balsamic glaze drizzle after roasting for a sweet and tangy contrast.
- Wild Rice Wonder: Swap out the rice with cooked wild rice for a nuttier and chewier texture.
- Vegan Twist: Go fully plant-based by using vegetable broth instead of chicken broth and adding chickpeas or diced tofu for protein.
Feel free to mix and match these variations to create your unique, personalized Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash dish to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs.
Storage for the Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
You can store leftover Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. To ensure they stay fresh:
- Cool Down: Allow the stuffed acorn squash to cool to room temperature before refrigerating.
- Airtight Container: Place them in an airtight container to prevent moisture loss and maintain flavor.
- Label and Date: Don't forget to label the container with the date you prepared them, so you can keep track of their freshness.
When reheating, it's a good idea to sprinkle a bit of water over the squash or cover them with a damp paper towel to help retain moisture. Reheat in the oven at a low temperature or use the microwave until they are heated through. Always ensure that leftovers are reheated to a safe internal temperature before consuming, which is 165°F (74°C).
Top tips for making Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash
Here are 10 top tips to make your Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash turn out perfectly:
- Choose the Right Acorn Squash: Look for squash that are heavy for their size and have a firm, unblemished skin.
- Slice a Thin Bottom: Trim a small slice from the bottom of each squash half to help them sit evenly without wobbling.
- Precook the Squash: Partially roast the acorn squash halves before stuffing to ensure they're tender and easy to scoop out.
- Season Inside and Out: Brush the inside of the squash halves with olive oil, salt, and pepper before roasting for added flavor.
- Use Fresh Sage: Fresh sage leaves will impart a more vibrant flavor compared to dried sage.
- Sauté the Mushrooms: Cook the Portobello mushrooms separately before adding them to the stuffing mix; this enhances their flavor and removes excess moisture.
- Don't Overstuff: Be mindful not to overfill the squash halves to prevent the stuffing from spilling over during baking.
- Baste for Moisture: Baste the tops of the stuffed squash with a bit of olive oil or butter while baking to keep them moist.
- Cover if Needed: If the squash starts to brown too quickly, cover them with foil during baking and uncover in the last few minutes for a golden finish.
- Test for Doneness: Pierce the squash with a fork or knife to check for tenderness before serving; they should be easily pierced.
With these tips in mind, you'll master the art of making Portobello and Sage-Stuffed Acorn Squash like a pro!
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