I was raised to believe that experimentation in the kitchen can lead to culinary genius (bananas and peanut butter sandwiches, anyone?). Happy accidents or serendipitous spills make the most brilliant dishes. Patience is key, because a recipe may transform itself many times over before revealing its true purpose. This is the beauty of cooking, and we’re thrilled to share with you how Denise’s butternut squash journey ended with a delightful dinner or side dish. -Kate
Where do I start with this recipe? Sometimes when I set out to create something table worthy, it just does not come together in pots and pans as it has in my head. This is one recipe that decided to challenge me from the start. It definitely evolved over the past few weeks of recipe testing, as it went from vegetarian to meat back to vegetarian. The final verdict is that I am very happy with the simple outcome, and am thrilled to share it with you just in time for Thanksgiving.
I like simple and flavorful food especially for a dinner party. It is fun to get all fancy with a recipe and start adding a little of this and that with hopes of it becoming the rock star of recipes. I really wanted this recipe to feel as if I was sitting around the family table when I took my first bite. I accomplished just that.
My favorite part of this recipe is that there isn’t any fuss. Good ole fashioned roasted butternut squash is filled with a mixture of brown and wild rice that has been sautéed with onions, garlic, a little celery and lots of fresh herbs. Slices of cremini mushrooms add the earthiness that the recipe needed, and the kale made it extra healthy. I really liked how the creamy butternut squash balanced out the nuttiness of the toasted rice creating the perfect side dish for your vegetarian friends, as well as your turkey loving guests.
Wild Rice Stuffed Butternut Squash
- 1 2-1/2 pound butternut squash, cut in half and seeds removed
- 7 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup minced yellow onion
- 1/4 cup minced celery
- 1 tablespoon fresh sage finely minced
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
- 1/2 cup brown and wild rice mixture
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 6 large cremini mushrooms
- 1/2 bunch lacinato kale thinly sliced
- Baking sheet, sauce pan, large frying pan
- Preheat the oven to 425.
- Place the butternut squash on a baking sheet and drizzle each half with 1 tablespoon olive oil (each). Slide into the oven and roast until fork tender, about 30 - 35 minutes. Remove and set aside.
- While the butternut squash is roasting prepare rest of the filling.
- Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a medium sauce pan and heat over medium heat.
- Add the onion and celery, stir and cook for three minutes.
- Add the rice and continue cooking until lightly browned and fragrant, stirring the entire time.
- Pour the stock into the rice mixture and bring to a boil.
- Cover the saucepan with a lid and simmer over low heat for 20 - 25 minutes or until cooked and no liquid is left. Fluff with a fork.
- In a large frying pan add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and heat over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and cook for one minute, then add the mushrooms and cook over low heat until golden brown, about 8 minutes.
- Stir in the fresh herbs.
- Next add the kale and cook until wilted. Remove from the heat.
- Scoop out some of the butternut squash and cut into small pieces. Return the shell of the squash to the baking sheet.
- Fold the rice and squash into the kale mixture, then gently fill each of the squash shells.
- Return to the oven and reheat for 10 minutes.
- Serve. Eat.
Eat Boutique was an award-winning shop and story-driven recipe site created by Maggie Battista – an author, business guide and alignment seeker. After hosting retail markets for 25,000+ guests, Maggie now supports entrepreneurs as they create values-based businesses through We Are Magic Studio. Follow Maggie Battista on Instagram.