Monday, November 19, 2012

Sala’s Acorn Squash Stuffed with Brown Rice Mushroom Pilaf

An acorn squash sat on my counter as I waited for inspiration. One acorn squash, one recipe, two servings ~ there it was on the internet, straight from the kitchen of my blogging friend Sala at Veggie Belly.

All I had to do was run (walk, actually) to the nearby supermarket and buy cremini mushrooms.

Sala’s recipe also invites the optional addition of halloumi cheese. Because of the price tag on this cheese and my mid-month financial balance, I decided to forgo this semi-hard cheese made from a mixture of milks. I’ve savored halloumi on past occasions, including a stop at Nando’s Peri-Peri in Maryland, so I can assure you it’s well worth the price if you choose to add it.

You can find Sala’s complete, original recipe and her beautiful photos here.

Acorn Squash Stuffed with Brown Rice Mushroom Pilaf ~ 2 Servings
(based on a recipe by Sala @

1 acorn squash (I recommend picking out a rather large one)
1-1/2 T. ghee
1/2 tsp. powdered cinnamon
2 whole cloves
5 oz. (about 2 cups) chopped cremini mushrooms
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 cup long grain brown rice
salt, to taste
Optional ~ Wild Mushroom & Sage Infused Olive Oil

1. Preheat oven to 400-degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Cut squash in half. Scrape out membrane and seeds. Bake on parchment lined baking sheet, cut side down, 30 minutes or until squash is fork-tender.
3. When squash is done, cut off tips so that squash sits up steadily.
4. While squash is baking, heat butter in large, deep skillet. Add cinnamon and cloves and let sizzle for 30 seconds.
5. Add mushrooms and cook without stirring on medium-high heat, till mushrooms brown.
6. Reduce heat to medium and add garlic, rice and salt. Stir for two minutes.
7. Add 1 cup water and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer till rice is done, about 50 minutes.
8. When rice is done, but not mushy, turn off heat and let sit covered 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Discard cloves.
9. Spoon pilaf into baked squash cavities and serve immediately. (If the squash needs reheating, do so in a microwave before adding the pilaf.)

I mentioned that I left the halloumi cheese out of Sala’s recipe. I also skipped the dried cranberries or raisins. This dish was absolutely delicious without them, although I have no doubt it would taste just as good with either or both!

On my other blog, Corning NY Step by Step, I wrote about the little shop where I bought Wild Mushroom & Sage Infused Olive Oil. This turned out to be the perfect topping when I drizzled some on the Acorn Squash Stuffed with Brown Rice Mushroom Pilaf.


  1. You have inspired me my friend I definitely need to start stuffing veges - fantastic :)

    Choc Chip Uru

    1. With your successes stuffing all things chocolate, CCU, I'm sure you'll do equally as well with veggies!


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