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Baked Quinoa-Stuffed Acorn Squash

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Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 317 per serving
Percent from Fat: 14%
Cusine: Indian
Course: Lunch, Dinner, Sides
Food as MedicineSM Ingredient: Quinoa

Food as MedicineSM Tip

Quinoa is a gluten-free seed that makes a great substitute for rice. Its flavor is slightly nutty and has a smooth, creamy texture. Quinoa contains high levels of manganese, a mineral that helps reduce migraines and headaches. It's also rich in riboflavin/vitamin B2, which helps cells produce energy.

Culinary Taste Tip

When selecting an acorn squash at the farmers market or grocery, look for a deep orange spot on the bottom. It's a good indicator of ripeness.

Culinary Technique Tip

Quinoa seeds increase significantly while cooking in liquid, as much as three to four times in size. Toast the seeds before cooking to enhance their natural nutty flavor.

Ingredients

2 (4-inch diameter) acorn squash (about 2¼ pounds total)
1¼ cups vegetable broth, such as Imagine or Emeril's organic brands
½ cup organic quinoa, such as Bob's Red Mill brand
1½ teaspoons garam masala, such as McCormick brand
1 cup drained no salt added canned garbanzo beans or chickpeas
2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel
½ teaspoon coarse sea salt or kosher salt
½ cup chopped mint leaves
¼ cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds), toasted
1 to 2 teaspoons pomegranate glaze or ¼ cup pomegranate seeds (optional)


Preparation

Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut each squash in half crosswise. Scoop out seeds. Place squash halves, cut sides down on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until squash is tender when pierced with a sharp knife.

Meanwhile, combine broth, quinoa and garam masala in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender and most of liquid is absorbed. Stir in garbanzo beans and orange peel; heat through. Arrange squash, cut sides up on serving plates; sprinkle with salt. Mound quinoa mixture over squash; top with mint and pepitas. Top with pomegranate glaze or seeds if desired.


Substitutions

Curry powder may replace the garam masala and parsley or cilantro may replace the mint.

Nutritional Analysis

Total fat (g): 5.93 - Cholesterol (mg): 0.0 - Trans fatty acids (g): 0.0 - Saturated fat (g): 0.84 - Polyunsaturated fat (g): 1.95 - Monounsaturated fat (g): 1.36 - Fiber (g): 9.96 - Carbohydrates (g): 60.17 - Sugar (g): 7.09 - Protein (g): 12.21 - Sodium (mg): 239.38 - Calcium (mg) 147.95.

Comments on Baked Quinoa-Stuffed Acorn Squash

From: joane

Excellant! I love the combination of textures and flavors. I have passed this on to family and friends. I used it as the main course. Will definately make again.

From: loon

Very bitter tasting...not a recipe that I will make again.

From: justcallmeshel

This was bland. The quinoa was hard to find. Both my husband and I were disappointed as it looked so good in the picture. I doubt if it will be made again in our house.

From: eaglennc54

With the negative comments,I am not sure that I fel good about trying the recipe. What may I do to prevent the bitterness mentioned by loon or is that expected?

My question, prior to reading the comments, where might I purchase guinoa?

From: ScarletQ

I have not made this recipe but use quinoa regularly in all kinds of recipes instead of rice and pasta. What is missing from the instructions is that there is a coating on the quinoa which requires rinsing prior to using or else it will taste bitter. I buy the bulk quinoa rather than the specified brand but if anyone will keep an open mind and look up info on quinoa, you will see that it is a chameleon rather than it being bland. You can make it taste any way you want with different broths and spices. I make Italian, Chinese, Mexican and Indian quinoa so we never get tired of it and we eat some form every day for our health and because it tastes great. My favorite thing to make is Quinoa Taboule. It is so much better than using bulgur wheat. Quinoa is diabetic friendly as well as gluten free. Since there was no response to the posts to correct the negative thoughts, I felt I had to post one to stand up for quinoa. Quinoa is the stage to build your culinary artistry on...imagine it and try it. I have not been disappointed in any thing I tried yet. I will be trying this recipe in the future.

From: v_markwell

As the member above was saying, the most important thing to remember is to RINSE THE QUINOA. I made this mistake once, & swore that I would never eat this vile stuff again. After learning this tip, I have enjoyed many healthy & happy meals with my friend Quin. RINSE IT AND RINSE IT AGAIN. The End.

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