Tuesday, May 15, 2007

twice baked squash

there are only so many times i can have buttered corn or buttered peas with my dinner. which leads me to my current status of a lets-try-new-ways-to-cook-veggies kick. then you factor in how i hate brocolli and andrew dislikes carrots. he says carrots are little arrows pointing down to hell, which always makes me laugh. i gues carrots are somewhat arrow shaped and i suppose they grow downwards pointing to the center of the earth. i think it is fairly hot in there. maybe he's on to something. i do however feel perfectly free to try out any recipe that suits me (as long as it does not have the afformentioned brocolli or carrots). mostly because andrew will eat just about anything you put in front of him. he'll eat the carrots. he'll just snarl at them with every bite. he is in the army after all: you eat what is put in front of you or you die tomorrow. its just that simple. we were both a bit hestitant on this one, but i think it turned out quite nice actually.

twice baked squash

2 med acorn squash
1 1/2 cup chicken broth (or vegetable if you prefer)
1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins
1/2 cup maple syrup (sugar free maple flavored syrup works just as well if you are watching carbs)
2 large granny smith apples
1 T lemon juice
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground nutmeg
1 T chopped walnuts (optional)
2 cups shredded chicken or 1 pack cubed tofu (i've tried both and like both)
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 t cornstarch
sour cream

cut each squash in half, lengthwise; scoop out and discard seeds and fibers. place halves, cut side down, in a 9x13 pan. add broth. bake at 350 until squash is tender (about an hour). meanwile, in a small bowl, combine fruit and syrup. let stand until fruit is softened (about 10 minutes). peel, core, and thinly slice apples; place in large bowl. add lemon juice, cinnamon, and nutmag. stir to coat. in a frying pan, combine apples, fruit mix, and 1/2 cup water. cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until apples are almost tender when pierced (3 minutes). add chicken or tofu and cook just until headed through. in a small bowl, smoothly blend vinegar and cornstarch, add to the apple mix and cook until sauce boils and thickens slightly. remove from heat. once squash are cooked, carefully scoop out cooked squash and add to apple mix. stir everything together and refill squash skins. place back into oven 5 minutes. garnish with walnuts and a dollop of sour cream. i would pair this with a salad and some type of creamy dessert like cheesecake. enjoy!


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