Hopi Squash with Green Chile and Pine Nut Stuffing

We grew a gigantic Hopi squash plant this summer, and it ended up producing about a dozen lovely round, pinkish-orange pumpkins. They each have a cute little turban at the blossom end, and weigh 2 to 7 pounds. I don't usually bother growing squash because of the squash bugs, but this plant was incredibly vigorous! So I've been looking for ways to eat more winter squash (or give it away). Stuffed squash is great because you can easily make it so many different ways, you might not even get tired of it before spring! This stuffing, with green chile, pine nuts, apples and cloves, is tasty with either corn bread or regular bread. It's a perfect vegetarian main dish, but you could add meat, such as browned sausage or shredded chicken as well.

2 small winter squashes (about 2 pounds each)
3 T. olive oil
1 large onion, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced
1 celery rib, finely diced
1 large apple, coarsely chopped
1/2 C. chopped green chile
4 cups dried bread (or cornbread) cubes

1/4 C. pine nuts
1/4 to 1 C. vegetable or chicken stock
Salt and pepper 

Preheat oven to 375F. Cut squash in half through the stem end, and scoop out the seeds. Rub the insides with a little olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Place the halves cut side down, in a baking pan. Bake until tender, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the stuffing.

Heat olive oil on medium flame in a large skillet or saucepan. Cook onion, carrot, and celery until very soft and lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Add apple, green chile and cloves. Cook, stirring often, for a few minutes longer, until apple is soft. Toss this mixture with the bread cubes and pine nuts. Add stock, a little at a time, until the bread is moist but not soggy. Season with salt and pepper as desired.

Turn over the squash halves, and drain any liquid from the pan. Fill each half with stuffing, and bake about 15 minutes more, until the top of the stuffing is lightly browned. Serves 4.


Unknown said…
Love this article. At the Rail Yards Market, part of our mission is raising awareness about endemic foods that are delicious, well-adapted to the region, and that celebrate the culture of this place. To that end, your blog is amazing! Love the utilization of unconventional ingredients like tumbleweed. Can we talk over the phone or grab a tea one of these days? I'd be very appreciative. My # is 505-203-6200, email chad.gruber@gmail.com. Thanks!

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