Squash in all forms makes me happy. We’ve been getting locally grown, farm fresh, organic squash from our CSA lately and it’s amazing how much better it tastes than store-bought squash. It’s one of those foods that just feels good to eat – even the skin. Quite honestly, I like it roasted with nothing on it – not even salt or pepper. But sometimes it’s fun to dress it up a little. That’s what I did here.
I like to include squash in my meals as a carb – it has so many great health benefits, including beta carotene, vitamins A & C, dietary fiber…read all about it here. I steer clear of certain carbs – white pototoes and white rice to name a couple. They tend to spike my blood sugar and then I feel tired. Choosing healthier carbs has been an important part of my long-term weight loss, and this is one of them I love. It’s also naturally gluten-free, which is always a plus in my book.
Instead of stuffing this beautiful squash with a greasy sausage, I went for apples, dates, and walnuts with a little cinnamon and agave. It’s a simple stuffing that you could easily use with any other winter squash.
What’s your favorite way to eat squash?
Serves: 2 - 4 servings, as a side dish
- 1 medium acorn squash
- kosher salt & fresh ground black pepper
- 1 medium apple, peeled and cubed into ¼ inch
- ¼ cup walnuts, chopped
- 2 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
- ¼ teaspoon good quality cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons agave, divided
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash and dry the outside of the squash, cut it in half, and remove the seeds. Season the squash flesh lightly with salt and pepper. Place the squash flesh side down in a baking dish and add about ¼ – ½ inch of water to the pan. Place the pan uncovered into the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- While squash is baking, prepare the stuffing. Combine apple walnuts, dates, cinnamon, 1 tablespoon agave, and melted butter in a bowl. After 30 minutes, remove the squash from the oven and divide the stuffing between the two halved, placing the stuffing in the cavity of the squash.
- Cover with aluminum foil and return to the oven for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes , heat remaining one tablespoon of agave slightly in the microwave. Uncover the squash, baste with agave and bake for another 10 – 20 minutes, or until squash flesh and apples are tender. Serve as desired, either as halves or cut into smaller pieces.