Wild rice is a great side dish but also a terrific stuffing. The nutty, chewy texture compliments the crunchy nuts and tart cherries with sweet notes from the squash and maple syrup. This dish makes for a great main course or it can be cut up for a side.

Prep time: 45 min

Cook time: 80 min

Total time: 125 min

Acorn Squash Stuffed with Wild Rice
Copyright Recipe © 2015 Woodland Foods

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Cup Wild Rice

  • 2 Cups Water

  • 3 Medium Acorn Squash, halved lengthwise and seeded

  • 4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, melted and divided

  • 3 Tablespoons Maple Syrup

  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons Fine Sea Salt, divided

  • 1/2 Teaspoon Black Peppercorns, freshly ground, divided

  • 1 Medium Onion, finely chopped

  • 1 Shallot, finely chopped

  • 2 Celery Stalks, finely chopped

  • 1 Teaspoon Fresh Thyme Leaves, minced

  • 2/3 Cup Medium Pecan Pieces, toasted and finely chopped

  • 1/4 Cup Dried Tart Cherries

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F, and place rack in center.

  2. Combine Wild Rice and water in medium pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook for 40 to 45 minutes, until water is absorbed and rice is tender. Remove from heat and fluff with fork.

  3. While rice is cooking, place squash cut-side up on foil- or parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush 2 tablespoons melted butter over cut sides and insides of squash halves, and drizzle with maple syrup. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

  4. Roast in oven until just fork tender, about 25 to 30 minutes.

  5. Place 1 tablespoon melted butter in large sauté pan over medium heat. When it becomes foamy, add onion, shallot, celery, salt and pepper. Stir until vegetables are softened, about 6 minutes. Add thyme and cook 1 minute.

  6. Remove from heat and stir in cooked rice, pecans and cherries, mixing thoroughly.

  7. Divide filling among roasted squash halves, and drizzle with remaining melted butter. Return to oven, and roast until squash is completely tender, edges have begun to brown and filling is heated through, about 20 minutes.