Recipe details

Denise says:

This makes a vegetarian main course, side dish or light lunch. Enjoy the variety of squash now in season and so make with what you can purchase from your supermarket.

Squash come in two categories; summer or winter. Winter squash comes in shapes round and elongated, scalloped and pear-shaped with flesh that ranges from golden-yellow to brilliant orange. They take longer to mature than summer squash (3 months or more). They can be stored for months in a cool basement-hence the name Winter squash.

Summer squash have thin, edible skins and soft seeds, and are high in vitamins A and C, and niacin. The tender flesh has a high water content, sweet and mild flavour, and requires little cooking eg courgettes and marrows are summer squash.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Serves: 6 people

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons olive oil
6 small round squash eg acorn, butternut squash, red kuri squash, kabocha, hubbard and carnival.
6 cloves garlic – peeled and roughly chopped
2 large carrots – peeled and finely grated
2 onions – peeled and finely chopped
Bunch of fresh oregano and fresh thyme – leaves only
1 400g tin artichoke hearts – drained and chopped
1 lemon – zest only
1 teaspoon salt and freshly ground black pepper
60g unsalted cashew nuts

Fig Jam optional or buy ready made
300g fresh/ dried figs – stalks removed
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon maple syrup/ date syrup

Method

1) Preheat the oven to 150 C/ Gas mark 2.
2) Line a baking tray with baking parchment paper.
3) Brush a little olive oil over the squash and roast for 50 minutes.
4) Remove from the oven and leave to cool and when cool enough, cut the tops off and carefully scoop out the flesh and discard. Set aside.
5) Heat the remaining oil and sauté the onions, garlic, carrots and oregano and thyme for about 5 minutes.
6) Add the artichokes, lemon zest, salt, pepper and cashew nuts and stir in well. Cook for a further 5 minutes.
7) Stuff the squash shells with the filling mixture and return to the oven for about 20 minutes or until golden.
8) Meanwhile make the fig jam. Chop the figs and pan in a saucepan with the balsamic vinegar, syrup and 2 tablespoons water.
9) Simmer for 10 minutes until the figs become soft and sticky.

Serve the stuffed squash with a dollop of fig jam. Garnish with a sprinkling of thyme and oregano leaves.

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