Stuffed pumpkins or squashes make a perfect center piece for your Autumn harvest celebration or holiday table. Be it a small informal family gathering or part of an elaborate dinner party. This dish hits plenty of notes; spicy, sweet, aromatic, creamy, crunchy it has everything. This filling recipe will stuff one large pumpkin or 4 medium acorns. That’s approximately 4-5 cups. Even if you end up with extra it’s great the next day on a toast. So here we go!
A few things to note before you prep.
- Massage the kale with lemon juice before you cut it. It makes the leaves pliable and sweeter.
- Toast the walnuts and pumpkin seeds for extra crunchiness
- if you can’t find pomegranate no worries use dried cranberries, raisins or chopped figs.
- If you don’t want all of it to be lentils, use half quinoa and half of lentils.
- There are two ways to slice the acorns. 1. Cut he in halves or 2. Cut about an inch of the tops to create a lid. Scoop out the seeds and pulp.
- You can wash the seeds and roast them along with the acorns for 20 minutes and use as topping.
- 4 acorn squash, halved and deseeded
- 4-6 cloves of garlic
- 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
- Generous pinch of chilli flakes
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup cooked chestnuts chopped
- 2 cups cooked beluga lentils
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 2 cups shredded kale
- 2 cups chopped mixed mushrooms like shiitake, oyster, shiitake
- 1/2 tbsp fresh sage, chopped
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or Hazelnuts
- 1/4 pumpkin seeds
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast or 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
- chopped parsley and pomegranate arils
- Preheat the oven to 375F.
- Cut the acorns in half. Slice a small portion off the the bottom so the acorn halves have a firm base to sit on. Without cutting too much of the pulp.
- Line a baking sheet and brush the cut side of the squash with about 1 tbsp olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast cut side down for about 40 minutes, or until tender.
- Warm a large pan. Add the olive oil. Add the onions, kale, fresh mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and cook for about 7 minutes. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, chilli flakes. Add the lentils and chestnuts. Mix well add a little stock if too dry. Remove from heat and add the sage.
- To make the topping, toast the pumpkin seeds, walnuts and the nutritional yeast in a dry pan over medium heat until golden brown, about 5 minutes.
- Fill the acorns with the stuffing, packing it down with a spoon. Sprinkle with the walnut-seed-yeast or feta topping and bake further for about 15 minutes. Garnish with chopped parsley and pomegranate arils.