Recipe Cranberry and Farro Stuffed Squash

The Late Night Gourmet

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One thing I love about squash is that they seemingly last forever. I bought the kabocha squash maybe 2 months ago, and it was still great when I made this. I've seen variations of how to stuff a squash, and I decided on farro because it's more than just filler: it has a terrific chew to it, and each little nugget of awesome has a rich flavor of the grain.

And then we have the cranberries. I'm really starting to like these tart and bitter little flavor bombs. I was once put off it because my main exposure was to the gelatinous monstrosity that had the sole purpose of ruining the taste of everything else at your Thanksgiving dinner. Here, the bitterness is balanced by the other ingredients. Using goat cheese was a stroke of luck: I was going to use feta, but when I saw the container of goat cheese, I decided to go that way instead.

Ingredients

1 kabocha squash
1 cup of water
1/2 cup dry farro
1 cup vegetable stock
2 ounces apple cider
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 cup fresh cranberries
1 1/2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350° F (176° C). Trim excess bits of the stem from the squash: each half should be able to rest like a bowl after being split. Cut squash in half, and scoop out the seeds.

2. Add water to a baking sheet, and place squash halves face-down. Bake for 40 minutes or until the flesh is tender.

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3. Add dry farro, stock, and apple cider to a small pot and raise to a boil. Lower heat to medium-low and cook, covered, for 20 minutes or until liquid is mostly absorbed.

4. Melt butter in a small pan. Saute onions for a few minutes, until slightly browned. Add jalapeno pepper and saute, stirring frequently for about a minute. Add cranberries, stir to coat, and cook for another 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Set aside.

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5. Scoop out the inside of the squash, but leave a thin layer of flesh inside the skin. Mix the flesh with the farro until fully blended.

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6. Carefully mix the cranberry/onion/pepper mixture into the bowl so as to avoid breaking any of the cranberries. Blend until evenly distributed.

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7. Scoop mixture evenly into each squash half. Top with goat cheese and serve immediately.

34734
 

The Late Night Gourmet

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Very nice - I like the use of faro with cranberries & jalapeno and the goat's cheese must work very well with the sharp cranberries.
I think feta would have worked, too, but the funkiness of the goat cheese really played well off the tartness of the cranberries. To be totally honest, I've never had fresh cranberries before this challenge! It's always been either dried (which I love) or processed (which I don't). I was expecting them to be inedible, but they're actually really quite nice....like tiny Granny Smith apples.

I'm also conscious of the fact that I have used hot peppers in just about every recipe I make. I didn't see any stuffed squash recipes that use it, but of course mine did. Cranberry jam? No: spicy cranberry jam. I think basically any recipe that's not overtly sweet (like my apple crumble muffins) would be a candidate for adding heat. And, even sweet recipes almost always have cinnamon, which is a sort of spice, too.
 

MypinchofItaly

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View attachment 34735

One thing I love about squash is that they seemingly last forever. I bought the kabocha squash maybe 2 months ago, and it was still great when I made this. I've seen variations of how to stuff a squash, and I decided on farro because it's more than just filler: it has a terrific chew to it, and each little nugget of awesome has a rich flavor of the grain.

And then we have the cranberries. I'm really starting to like these tart and bitter little flavor bombs. I was once put off it because my main exposure was to the gelatinous monstrosity that had the sole purpose of ruining the taste of everything else at your Thanksgiving dinner. Here, the bitterness is balanced by the other ingredients. Using goat cheese was a stroke of luck: I was going to use feta, but when I saw the container of goat cheese, I decided to go that way instead.

Ingredients

1 kabocha squash
1 cup of water
1/2 cup dry farro
1 cup vegetable stock
2 ounces apple cider
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 cup fresh cranberries
1 1/2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350° F (176° C). Trim excess bits of the stem from the squash: each half should be able to rest like a bowl after being split. Cut squash in half, and scoop out the seeds.

2. Add water to a baking sheet, and place squash halves face-down. Bake for 40 minutes or until the flesh is tender.

View attachment 34730

3. Add dry farro, stock, and apple cider to a small pot and raise to a boil. Lower heat to medium-low and cook, covered, for 20 minutes or until liquid is mostly absorbed.

4. Melt butter in a small pan. Saute onions for a few minutes, until slightly browned. Add jalapeno pepper and saute, stirring frequently for about a minute. Add cranberries, stir to coat, and cook for another 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Set aside.

View attachment 34731

5. Scoop out the inside of the squash, but leave a thin layer of flesh inside the skin. Mix the flesh with the farro until fully blended.

View attachment 34732

6. Carefully mix the cranberry/onion/pepper mixture into the bowl so as to avoid breaking any of the cranberries. Blend until evenly distributed.

View attachment 34733

7. Scoop mixture evenly into each squash half. Top with goat cheese and serve immediately.

View attachment 34734

What a fancy recipe. I’m quite intrigued about it..
 
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