Fall in love with this ultra-filling, winter-centric vegetarian recipe that stuffs spinach, couscous and walnuts into acorn squash.
Couscous Stuffed Acorn Squash
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup couscous
4 small acorn squash (1 to 1-1/4 pounds each)
2 tablespoons canola oil (divided)
1 cup chopped celery (about 4 stalks)
1 onion (finely diced)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon sage
1-1/2 cups frozen, thawed, chopped spinach
1/4 cup unsalted, chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/4 cup reduced-fat blue cheese crumbles
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Heat water to a boiling temperature using either a teapot or the microwave. In a bowl or heat-proof container, combine boiling water and couscous. Cover and let sit 10 minutes. Prepare each acorn squash: Cut off around 1-inch of the top of each acorn squash; use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and discard them. Use a knife to slice a sliver off the bottom of each squash so they stay upright as they cook. Place each acorn squash bottom onto a foil-lined baking sheet. Reserve. Meanwhile, warm 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Add celery, onion, salt, pepper and sage, stirring occasionally and sautéing until softened, about 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in thawed spinach, stirring and cooking until spinach is fully thawed and heated, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in reserved couscous, remaining 1 tablespoon canola oil, walnuts and maple syrup. Pack about 1 cup of stuffing into the cavity of each acorn squash. Top each squash with its lid. Bake in the oven until squash is tender, about 60 to 75 minutes. Remove acorn squash lid and top with blue cheese. Serve. Serves 4.
Tip: When a recipe calls for celery, go ahead and use the celery leaves on the stalk. The leaves add even more of a dose of celery flavor.
Nutritional Analysis—Calories: 381; fat: 13.6g; cholesterol: 4mg; sodium: 285mg; fiber: 9g; sugars: 14g; protein: 10g