'Tis the season for winter squash! In trying to maximize the incorporation of season vegetables into my day-to-day meals, the varieties of winter squash offer endless ways in which you may enjoy them!
Prior sharing this recipe with you, I encourage you to take a look at the following "Your Ultimate Guide to Winter Squash", courtesy of Culinary Nutrition Expert Nancy Williams. With this reference guide, she has done a beautiful job of compiling summaries of Acorn, Butternut, Blue Hubbard, Buttercup, Kabocha, Red Kuri, Spaghetti and Delicata varieties, including additional links to recipes to assist in working with these vegetables.
*The recipe of inspiration for my adventure with acorn squsah comes from the Naturally Ella website, and may be viewed at http://naturallyella.com/curried-acorn-squash-with-lemon-arugula-salad/
*I did make a few adaptations, to meet my needs, including:
1. Substituting plain, non-dairy yogurt for the Greek yogurt
2. Reducing the volume of Thai curry paste (I find a little bit goes a long way!)
3. Substituting field greens for the arugula (based on what I had at home already!)
4. Eliminating the feta cheese (as I don't tolerate cheese/dairy very well!)
The Recipe (adapted)
Curried Acorn Squash with Lemon, Quinoa & Field Greens Salad
Total Time: ~1 hour
Cook Time: ~45 minutes
Prep Time: ~15 minutes
Acorn Squash -
1 acorn squash
1/4 cup plain, non-dairy yogurt
2 tbsp. mild Thai curry paste (*I used 1 tbsp., as I find it quite intense!)
Quinoa & Field Greens Salad -
3 cups field greens, washed and torn into smaller pieces
1/2 cup yellow quinoa, cooked
1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. lemon juice, freshly-squeezed
2 tsp. raw, unpasteurized honey
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash acorn squash and slice in half, removing the seeds. Cut a small slice off the bottom of each half squash to create a level surface, so that the acorn squash doesn't rock. Place the acorn squash in a roasting pan, interior upwards, or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. (*I chose to pierce the flesh of the squash in multiple spots to facilitate the cooking process.)
2. In a small mixing bowl, stir together the non-dairy yogurt and Thai curry paste. Brush the mixture, generously, over the flesh of the acorn squash with a pastry brush. Place in the oven and roast until the squash is tender, approximately 40-50 minutes.
3. While the squash is roasting, combine the field greens and cooked quinoa in a mixing bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice and raw honey. Pour over the field greens and quinoa and toss until well-coated. Set aside.
4. Once the squash is tender, divide the field greens and quinoa mixture into the squash and serve.
Nutritional Value - Winter Squash:
The starch-related components provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic and insulin-regulating properties
A source of dietary fibre
A rich source of Vitamin A (critical for healthy vision and healthy skin) and Vitamin C (a critical antioxidant for the body)[i]
A source of B vitamins, including vitamin B1 (Thiamin) and vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid)
A rich source of several minerals, including potassium, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper, phosphorus and calcium[ii]
[i] The World’s Healthiest Foods: Squash, winter. Retrieved November 1, 2016 from http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=63
[ii] Organic Facts – Unbiased Info on Nutrition, Benefits of Food & Home Remedies: Health Benefits of Acorn Squash. Retrieved November 1, 2016 from https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/fruit/acorn-squash.html