On Thanksgiving day we enjoyed this amazing squash recipe made by our daughter-in-law. I am going to practice it today and serve it to a special guest coming to our house for lunch on Monday. I wanted to make a vegetarian meal for my guest and chose Squash with Almonds and Quinoa. I’ll also serve a salad with it.
- 2-4 small acorn squashes, halved and seeds removed – If you’re serving 2 people get 1 squash, 4 people then get 2 squashes, 8 people then get 4 squashes. The quinoa makes enough to fill 8 small squash halves. You could even use 1 large butternut squash here and fill that up with the quinoa. I used one squash and had the leftover quinoa for lunch sans the squash.
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for brushing on the squash
- Dash of salt and pepper
- 1 cup quick cooking quinoa
- 1¾ cups filtered water
- ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
- ½ cup feta, crumbled
- ½ cup raw almonds with skins, coarsely chopped
- 2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Using a sharp chef’s knife, carefully cut the acorn squash in half, from stem to tip. The squash can rock back and forth, so take care as you are cutting it.
- Scoop out all the seeds and membranes, using either a spoon or a melon baller.
- Brush each squash half with a bit of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
- Roast the squash cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, until tender when pierced with a fork and caramelized, about 15-25 minutes. It may take longer or shorter, depending on the size of your squash. I had a larger acorn squash, so it took mine about 25 minutes.
- While the squash is cooking, place quinoa along with 1¾ cups filtered water and a big pinch of coarse sea salt in a pot set over high heat. Bring quinoa to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, cover pot, and cook until all of the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa’s germs look like lots of little spirals, about 12-15 minutes.
- Turn off heat, place a dry clean paper towel between the pot and lid, and let quinoa sit for at least 5 minutes before giving it a fluff with a fork.
- While the quinoa and squash are cooking, chop the parsley and toast up the almonds. Note: You can also toast up the almonds ahead to time to save a step. Just store them in covered container till you’re ready to use t
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet set over medium heat. Add the chopped almonds to the skillet and stir frequently until golden brown in spots and the nuts are fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Transfer the nuts to a paper towel lined plate to absorb some of the oil. Sprinkle the almonds with some fine sea salt. Set them aside to cool.
- In a large bowl, combine together the quinoa, ½ cup chopped parsley, ½ cup feta, toasted almonds, 2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Fill up your squash halves with the quinoa and dig in.
- Got leftover quinoa? Just reheat it in a skillet with a touch of coconut oil, or just eat it cold