Try Roasted Winter Squash With Quinoa Mushroom Pilaf For Your Holiday Gathering

This dairy-free, high-protein vegan recipe makes a great main dish or side dish for your next meal.


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Roasted Winter Squash with Quinoa Mushroom Pilaf (Serves 6)

Ingredients:
3 medium winter squash (I use acorn squash.) halved lengthwise, seeds removed
Olive oil for brushing acorn squash
Quinoa Pilaf
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 onion, finely chopped, divided
1 cup quinoa (I use red. It adds beautiful color.), rinsed well and drained
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup water
3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups mushrooms, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
4 sage leaves, minced
1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup dried cranberries
salt and pepper, to taste

Preparation:
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Brush tops and inside of squash cavity lightly with olive oil. Season lightly with salt.
3. Roast in oven until fork tender, about 45 minutes to an hour. Roasting time will depend on the size of your squash.
4. Remove from oven and set aside.

Quinoa pilaf:
1. While acorn squash is roasting, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a saucepan. Add half the onion and cook until softened, about 2-3 minutes. Add the quinoa, broth, water and thyme, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and cook, covered, until liquid has been absorbed, about 15-20 minutes.
2. In a skillet, heat remaining tablespoon of oil, and add rest of onion, mushrooms, celery and sage. Sauté until vegetables are soft and no more liquid from mushrooms remains.
3. Toss mushroom mixture with cooked quinoa, along with pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Stuff acorn squash halves with quinoa pilaf.

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