After the intense hot summer we had, the cooler days and frigid nights have been welcomed.
Although the weather has been pleasant – we’re still in need of rain. Usually during this time of the year, the vivid colors of orange, red, and yellow leaves contrast beautifully with the bright green grasses that have been revived in these cooler days. This year, everything is dry. The parks, especially, are more like desserts with brown grasses and lakes so low and depleted of water, they look more like stagnant pools.
Although this years drought has been devastating, Fall is here and it still carries its beauty.
Especially at the farmers’ market where all sorts of brightly colored pumpkins, squashes, and gourds have survived the drought. I let the boys pick out their favorites and I like to swoon over the heirloom squashes that come in many shapes and sizes. During this time of the year, I stock up on pumpkin and squashes to save for the long winter ahead of us.
They tend to keep for 4-6 months when stored in cool places.
This past weekend, I found two beautiful heirloom squashes suitable for roasting and stuffing. About the size of an acorn squash but shaped like a bell pepper.
When I saw this squash, I knew I wanted it for stuffing.
I sliced it in half and removed its seeds (making sure to save about 15 seeds to dry and keep for my own garden).
I oiled, seasoned, and roasted it. The sweet smell of roasting squash filled my home.
While it was roasting, I made a simple sausage, bacon, and caramelized onion filling seasoned with sage and cardamom.
The flavors of the roasted squash with its filling complimented each other well. Sweet and savory filled with spice.
To round out its flavor and add a bit of texture, I garnished it with a bit of cheddar cheese, fresh sage, and crispy bacon.
Yes, Fall is here.
The flavors of the roasted squash with its filling seasoned with sage and cardamom complimented each other well. Sweet and savory filled with spice.
- 2 small heirloom or acorn squash (suitable for stuffing)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Salt and pepper to season
- 3 thick sliced pieces of bacon, diced
- 1/2 large sweet onion, diced
- 1lb ground pork
- 1 tablespoon, chopped fresh sage
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbl apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup sliced cheddar cheese
- Cut the squashes in half, scraping out all of the seeds. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Place on a baking stone or sheet, cut side up, and roast at 375F for 1 hour or until its soft and can be pierced with a fork.
- In a small cast iron pan or skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until its fat has been rendered and the meat is brown and crispy. Set aside.
- In the bacon fat, saute the onion until it's soft and begins to turn brown and caramelize. Set aside
- In a large cast iron skillet or pan, cook the ground pork over medium heat.
- Once it's cooked through, add the onion, 1/2 of the bacon, sage, cardamom, 1 tsp salt, and apple cider vinegar. Mix through.
- Cook on medium low heat for about 5 minutes allowing the flavors to incorporate.
- Divide the mixture into the four squash pieces.
- Garnish with cheddar cheese, fresh cut sage, and the remaining bacon pieces.
- Return to the oven for an additional five minutes, allowing the cheese to melt.
Do you enjoy stuffed squash? Please share your favorite stuffed squash or Fall recipe.