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Course: Mains
Keyword: Christmas, Fall, Holidays, Pork, Sides, Stuffed Squash, Thanksgiving

Stuffed Acorn Squash

ACTIVE TIME: 40 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Photo by Lynne Calamia
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  • 4 (1- to 1 1/4-pound) acorn squash
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 8 ounces ground pork
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped carrot
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen spinach, thawed, drained, and chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper
ACTIVE TIME: 40 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

Procedure

  • Heat oven to 400ºF. Line a half-sheet pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Cut 1 inch off the top of each acorn squash and scoop out the seeds. If necessary in order for the squash to sit upright, cut off a small portion of the bottom. Put 1 of the 4 pieces of butter in the cavity of each squash. Set squash on the prepared sheet pan and set aside.
  • Place an 11-inch saute pan over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and swirl the pan to coat. Add the ground pork and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Remove the meat to a small bowl and set aside. Add the remaining olive oil, onion, celery, and carrot and sauté until they begin to soften, another 5 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the white wine and sherry vinegar and let simmer until almost evaporated, 2-3 minutes.
  • Return the pork to the pan along with the cooked rice, spinach, pine nuts, oregano, thyme, sage, remaining salt and the pepper. Stir to combine and heat thoroughly, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and divide the mixture evenly among the squash, Top each squash with its lid, and bake until the squash is tender, about 1 hour. Serve immediately.
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