Each Autumn, I make this recipe with whichever small squashes are available. Here, I’m using acorn squash but I also use the same filling for small pumpkins, crown prince or butternut squash.
I love the simple cheese, onion and grain filling. Apart from Parmesan, I don’t often cook with hard cheeses but this is very good and very satisfying!
For a vegan filling, simply use non-dairy alternatives and season well.
It’s easy enough to cook in the caravan, as you’ll see from my photos. Prepare ahead on a dull day, then once filled, cook just before your mealtime.
Portions: 2 – 3
Prep and Cook Time: Over 1 hour
Cookware: Foil-covered roasting tray, small saucepan and a wok
Oven: 200C / Gas 6
- 3 small squashes – cut in half, top to bottom
- oil and salt
- 120g grains, of choice (I used Italian grains)
- 1 red onion – finely chopped
- 2 banana shallots – finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves – finely chopped
- 1 heaped tbsp soft cheese, of choice (cream, ricotta, mascarpone)
- 50g hard strong cheese – grated (I used a vintage cheddar but Parmesan is also good)
- 30g hard strong cheese – grated, to sprinkle over once filled
- parsley – chopped, to sprinkle over once cooked
Place the squash halves, cut side up, on the foil-covered tray and drizzle a little oil over surfaces. Sprinkle with salt. Pop into your 200C / Gas 6, pre-heated oven for 30 minutes until the flesh is soft. Put aside to cool slightly.
Whilst the squash is cooking, make your filling.
Cook the grains and drain once cooked. Mine take 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, gently sauté the onions until soft, then add the garlic. Do not brown. Add the drained grains and the soft cheese.
Once the squash flesh is soft and cool to the touch, spoon it out, leaving a shell and add to the wok. Combine all the ingredients and season well with salt and pepper, to taste.
Fill the squash shells with the stuffing, sprinkle with a little more hard cheese and pop into the oven for 15 minutes until warm and melting with crispy cheesy tops
I like to serve these tiny bowls of goodness with a green salad or green veggies.
Enjoy, whilst in season!
Depending on the squash, sometimes I leave a little of their flesh in the skins but these were well cooked in my caravan oven, so I removed all of the soft squash and added to the filling.
Often with pumpkins, I leave half of the cooked flesh in the shell, season well and then fill.