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Acorn squash is a very versatile squash; my Mom used to make it when I was a child, baked traditionally with cinnamon, butter, and a touch of brown sugar. In this recipe, I combine both sweet & savory flavors, for a healthy (of course!) and tasty dish. You can substitute celebration or butternut squash, whatever your preference. Grampa was a big fan of turnips, something I tried to like but never could…oddly enough, my sister Jess loves turnips…hey, put it on a post-it! This dish was a good compromise, and a great way to sneak in some vegetables in his otherwise clam-and-pancake diet. Oh, least I forget to mention, you can smother this in melted cheese for the picky eaters in your life.

Ingredients:

1 acorn squash cut in half

1 stalk of celery, diced

½ a Fuji apple

2 medium shallots, sliced thinly

3 large garlic cloves, chopped

4-5 shiitake mushroom (remove stems), sliced

¼ cup vegetable broth

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 sprig fresh thyme

1 sprig fresh oregano

½ teaspoon cumin

Salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

1)      Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut acorn squash in half length-wise and scoop out seeds & any strings. Drizzle center with olive oil, sprinkle with salt & pepper and place face down in baking dish with vegetable broth. Bake 40 minutes, remove from oven, set squash aside and pour broth & juices into frying pan.

2)      Sauté celery, shallots, and garlic in pan with broth & juices for about 3-4 minutes, or until fragrant. Add apples, mushrooms, thyme, oregano, salt & pepper; sauté additional 4-5 minutes.

3)      Place acorn squash cut side up in baking dish, stuff with filling, drizzle with a small amount of olive oil, tent with foil and bake another 10 to 15 minutes, or until fork inserted in squash flesh goes in easily. Enjoy!

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