Recipes - Baked Squash with Ras al Hanout, Wild Rice and Mushroom Stuffing
Stuffed vegetable dishes are easy to cook and so impressive to serve. We use the little buttercup squash pumpkins, but you could stuff eggplants or capsicums with this filling as well.
4 small squashes (little pumpkins)
For the stuffing:
125g wild rice
2 medium sized onions
1 stick of celery
400g small mushrooms
2 large cloves garlic
the leaves from 3 or 4 sprigs of thyme
2 teaspoons Ground's Ras al Hanout
75g pine nuts
a small bunch of chopped parsley
salt and pepper
a little butter
Put the wild rice on to cook in a medium sized pan with enough water to cover, salt it, and let it simmer for 45 minutes. It shouldn't be soft, but neither should it be crunchy. Keep tasting until you have the texture you like. Drain and set aside.
Put the oven on at 200C. Cut the squashes in half and scoop out the seeds and fibres. In a roasting tin or frying pan heat a little of the oil over a moderate heat, place the squashes cut side down and let them colour lightly then turn them over and transfer to the hot oven. Let them bake for 25-30 minutes until they are tender enough to take the point of a skewer with very little pressure. Brush them with a little melted butter or drizzle them with oil if they look as if they are drying.
Meanwhile peel and chop the onions and let them cook slowly in a heavy-based pan with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. They are done when they are soft, but stop before they colour. Chop the celery, and quarter the mushrooms. Peel the garlic, crush it and add it to the onion along with the chopped celery, mushrooms and thyme leaves. Cook, stirring the pot from time to time until all is sweet and tender. Stir in the Ras al Hanout and pine nuts. Add parsley and season with salt and black pepper. Fill the hollows in the squash with the stuffing, cover with buttered foil and bake for 15-20 minutes.
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