This healthy and gluten-free roast butternut squash stuffed with chorizo and wild rice was amazing! I love squash recipes in the fall!
With Mom out of town for work, Dad has a tendency to go a little stir crazy on his own, so the other day I headed over to their house to distract and have dinner with him. Since the weather was cooling down, it just seemed like a perfect night for stuffed butternut squash. I knew that they would have tons of awesome ingredients in and around their house just sitting around and waiting to be appreciated.
They have such an amazing place! Overlooking a vineyard, it is absolute peace to simply sit out on the porch with the cool breeze blowing through the leaves, watching the colors change on the vines.
An added bonus to heading over there is that they also just happen to have two completely fun and awesome dogs to play with. Dexter, a gentle giant of a golden retriever who has been with us for more than 15 years, and Charlotte, a sweet red poodle puppy Mom adopted last month. Dexter is such a wonderful role model for Charlotte. He’s filled with quiet happiness, content to follow Dad around the yard, barking the occasional order at the chickens and making sure his stuffed lamb gets plenty of fresh air. Charlotte, on the other hand, is filled to the brim with puppy exuberance, floppy and growing, throwing her entire body into life and joy. Everything is exciting. Everything is new.
You can’t help but be reminded how captivating things like falling leaves, raindrops, and a good meal really are. Squash recipes are made for days like today!
Another fun part of heading over to their place is having access to the garden and the exceptional ingredients they like to have on hand. Walking down the path towards the chicken coop, you can stop and grab herbs, greens, vegetables, and whatever else they have going that season and have freshly harvested produce to add to everything you’re making.
There were new squash on the vines and small decorative squashes scattered across the garden, all of which are perfect for squash recipes, but we headed back into Dad’s woodworking room, which smelled sweet, like sawdust and rain, to pilfer already harvested squash from the armoire he had filled top to bottom with a whole variety of different squash types. His butternut squash were the perfect size for one of the squash recipes I was considering, so I grabbed a few of them and headed back up to the house.
Though we’re from Minnesota and are very particular about our wild rice, Dad had found out that Rancho Gordo (who has the best dried beans, bar none, we’ve ever found) carries wild rice, so we decided to give it a try. It was fantastic! I recommend giving absolutely anything that you find from Rancho Gordo a try. You just can’t beat the quality! (Nope, I’m not being paid to say that. I really believe it!) Finding the best ingredients you can will always make your squash recipes even better.
We had squash, wild rice, chorizo, mushrooms, spinach, and lots of white wine and parmesan, so dinner was set! Stuffed butternut squash with chorizo, mushrooms, and parmesan cheese was on the menu. It was a solid fall meal; the earthiness of the wild rice and the mushrooms working with the saltiness of the parmesan, the spiciness of the chorizo, the brightness of the white wine, and the straight-up comfort of a little sour cream. As far as squash recipes go, you just couldn’t beat this one!
It’s hard to find a better meal than one you can serve in its own bowl! Stuffed butternut squash (or any squash!) is a fun meal to enjoy with family on a cool fall day.
Squash Recipes: Stuffed Butternut Squash with Chorizo, Wild Rice, and Parmesan
- 2 medium or 4 small squash (Butternut, acorn, or kabocha would be good choices)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- ½ tsp nutmeg, ground
- ¼ tsp chili flakes (I used Aleppo, but chipotle or even paprika would work well)
- Salt, pepper
- 1 cup wild rice
- 2 cups plus 2 cups water
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- ¼ cup white wine
- Salt, pepper
- 1 cup wild rice, cooked
- ½# chorizo (or 2 ea, casings removed and crumbled)
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup white wine
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms (whatever kind you prefer)
- 2 cups loosely packed spinach, fresh
- squash trimmings, if any
- 2 Tbs sour cream
- 3 Tbs parmesan, grated
- Salt, pepper
- ½ cup parmesan, grated
- Preheat oven to 375
- Cut the squash in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, and place on a baking tray, cut side up (for easy clean up, line the tray with parchment paper or aluminum foil.)
- Coat the squash with the oil, then sprinkle liberally with salt an pepper, the nutmeg and the chili powder.
- Bake until tender - 45 minutes to 1 hour, rotating pan halfway through cooking.
- Remove from oven. If you're using butternut squash, there won't be much space to fill the boats, so use a spoon and hollow out more space. Reserve the trimmings for the filling.
- Cover the rice with 2 cups hot water and let stand for 20 minutes. Drain and rinse.
- Warm the oil on a low heat.
- Add the shallots and garlic and cook gently until soft
- Add the rice and increase the heat.
- Stir for about a minute, until the grains are coated with the oil.
- Add the wine and reduce until almost evaporated.
- Add 2 cups water and a hefty pinch of salt, bring to a boil, and lower to a simmer.
- Cover with a lid or a piece of parchment paper cut to the size of your pan.
- Stir occasionally until the rice is tender and many of the grains have burst open. 20-30 minutes.
- Taste and season.
- Preheat the oven to 450
- Heat the oil in a saute pan and add the chorizo, breaking it up as you cook it.
- Allow the chorizo to get some color before stirring. If you don't move it around too often, it will be more likely to get nice color.
- Remove the chorizo from the pan. If there's more than 2 tsp oil in the pan, drain the excess.
- Add the onions and celery to the same pan and cook on a low heat, stirring frequently until they're opaque.
- Add the garlic, cook until soft.
- Add the wine, and reduce almost completely.
- Add the mushrooms, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cook for 1-2 minutes. If you keep the mushrooms spread out in a single layer, they'll cook much more evenly.
- Add the chorizo back in and the squash trimmings, if any.
- Add the spinach with another pinch of salt and pepper and stir until wilted.
- Add the sour cream and 3 Tbs parmesan and stir until thoroughly mixed.
- Taste, season with salt and pepper.
- Fill the squash, making sure you have a nice, tall mound.
- Sprinkle with parmesan (for the picture, I reserved about 2 Tbs for a final sprinkle at the end.)
- Put the squash back in the oven until the cheese is melted and beginning to become golden and crispy, about 8-12 minutes.
- If you reserved parmesan, sprinkle over the top.
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