Only Britney Spears could so eloquently express the way I feel right now:
I did it again -- I have brought KABOCHA SQUASH back. and it tastes better than ever.
Alright, I just have to tell you guys, straight up, no joke.... that I made the best dinner ever last night!
I'm not usually one to brag, yeah right I brag all the time, but this meal was crazy good. Awhile back -- I'm thinking 3 weeks -- I made stuffed kabocha squash for a potluck with my friends, and it was pretty tasty. I roasted the squash in the oven, then stuffed it with a filling I made: a tomato-based bulgar with peppers, carrots, and onion.
This time, I wanted to try something a little different. Instead of doing a peppery tomato-based stuffing, I wanted to do a sweet and savory-type, creamy, brown rice filling that would compliment the cinnamon-roasted kabocha squash perfectly.
I started off by...1. Preparing the squash. I washed and cut the kabocha squash (which I bought at Albertsons -- local grocer), scraped out the insides, sprayed with a non-stick cooking spray, and topped with salt, pepper, and a healthy dose of cinnamon.
I put the squash halves face down on a cooking sheet (covered in foil) and baked at 375 until tender (test with a fork). It took me approx. 40 minutes?
2. Start the rice. While the squash was in the over, I had cooked up about 1 1/2 cups of brown basmati rice in 3 cups of water with a cube of chicken bouillon.
3. Prepare the stuffing. I chopped up half of a white onion, a head of brocolli, and a healthy amount of baby bella mushrooms. In a large skillet, which I sprayed with non-stick spray, I started to saute the onions. I added in a tbsp of minced garlic too. (healthy tip: I used non-stick cooking spray and water instead of oil when I cook). I added the mushrooms and the brocolli and added water as needed so it wouldn't stick to the bottom.
4. Mix it up! Once the rice was done (and I had checked on the squash, which needed more time), I added the rice into the mix. I then added a can of Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup, which is my way of cheating instead of making a cream sauce. It was amazing! I tasted my combination :) I added more salt and pepper. Some more cinnamon, and added 3 packets of sweetener to the mix. This sounds weird (and you can omit this step), but it added just a hint of sweetness to the filling, which was offset by the salty combo of mushrooms and onions. DELISH.
5. Stuff it. Once the squash were tender, I turned off the oven and removed the tray. I stuffed my filling into the squash and topped it off with part-skim mozzarella cheese.
6. Unnecessary, but I placed the squash back into the oven because not everybody was ready to eat yet. It also melted the mozzarella on top -- and who doesn't love melty cheese?!
Check out the end result!!
This will probably become one of my go-to meals when I'm trying to serve a gourmet-style dinner for family and friends -- it's super easy and it looks like it took me all day!
Good thing I'm lazy and I have a sister to do all my dishes :)
I paired the squash with some fresh green beans that I blanched and topped with chopped tomatoes and goat cheese feta plus salt and pepper -- so light. SO YUM!!
It was another hit :)
Even with my sister who despises sweet potatoes -- I was nervous she wouldn't like the squash, but she said it was really light and only slightly sweet. Almost more like roasted pumpkin perhaps??
BTW -- kabocha squash is only 30 calories per cup. And it's filling!
Gspoon topped with red velvet cake?!?!?
Don't judge us...
But we rolled out to watch The Help dressed like hobos.
and we packed our own tea and diet coke...
THANK GOD movie theaters are so dark.
OH and I cut off 6 or 7 inches of my hair... so that's why it's tied back. I'm not ready to debut my new hair style yet...
Have a good day and enjoy!!