Butternut Squash Recipe to Make You Smile

Butternut Squash Recipe to Make You Smile

At this time of year, the butternut squash is everywhere. But by the time you’ve tried it roasted, or in a soup, or perhaps a risotto or in a tart, then you might feel that you have exhausted all the possibilities. Well guess again, I love this vegetable and it works really well with so many different ingredients.

To me, the trusty squash epitomises all things winter, the colour, the soft texture and roasted flavour can be a real comfort on a cold evening. Here’s a recipe to make you smile as winter bites and you want to enjoy a night in by the fire.

Butternut Squash Stuffed With Bacon, Walnuts and Rice

Serves 2 as a main meal or 4 as a lighter lunch. For a great vegetarian option, packed with flavour, just leave out the bacon.

Ingredients

1 small butternut squash
100g bacon lardons
1 onion, finely chopped
1 piece of fresh ginger, chopped( the size of half a walnut)
2 cloves of garlic crushed
75g frozen peas
1 egg, beaten
2 tbsp creme fraiche
80g feta cheese crumbled
75g rice (boiled)
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
10 walnuts roughly chopped
2 olives, halved
2 sage leaves or mint leaves cut in half length ways
Rape seed oil 1 tbsp

Here’s How

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C

2. Wash the butternut squash and cut in half lengthways. Scoop the seeds out of each half.

3. Place the halves on a baking tray, cut side up then drizzle with the rape seed oil and season with salt and pepper.

4. Cook in the oven for 15 minutes.

5. Gently fry the onion, bacon, garlic and ginger in a pan. If you cook gently then the fat coming out of the lardons will be enough to cook the other ingredients and you wont need to add any oil.

6. Once the onions have softened and the lardons are almost cooked, add the frozen peas and the cayenne pepper. Cook for another 2-3 minutes, then remove from the heat.

7. Pour the mixture into a bowl and allow to cool a little.

8. Once cooled, add the cooked rice, walnuts, feta cheese, beaten egg and creme fraiche.

9. Remove the butternut squash from the oven and spoon the mixture into the hole where the seeds used to be and season with black pepper. Add the olives to represent eyes and the sage leaves for eyebrows.

10. Return the filled squash to the oven and cook for a further 20-25 minutes until the filling is hot and the squash interior is soft.

Enjoy! x

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