Thursday, February 18, 2010

Baked Acorn Squash Filled with Italian Sausage and Rigatoni Pasta

Baked Acorn Squash Filled with Italian Sausage and Rigatoni Pasta is probably one of the coolest things I have ever made. And talk about presentation... WOW! Isn't it beautiful? I picked the recipe because we had some Delicata Squash to use up from our Dandelion Organic Delivery. Don made the comment as we chowed down on our delicious meal, that all of our meals that center around squash feel like dessert! The recipe is a bit labor intensive but still fun to make and a great way to spend the evening. For a copy of the full recipe, please visit I adjusted the regular version slightly as follows.

Pick a squash, any squash. The recipe calls for Acorn Squash but we had some nice Delicata on hand so used that instead. Cut in half and scoop out the seeds. Place on a baking sheet and fill with water to 1/2 inch. Cover with foil and roast/steam in the oven at 350 degrees for one hour.

Next prepare the red sauce. Saute 4 minced garlic cloves and 1/2 cup finely chopped onion in olive oil in a medium sauce pan for three minutes. Add one cup whole peeled tomatoes with juices and 1 Tablespoon dried basil. Use some kitchen sheers to cut up the tomatoes into smaller chunks. Simmer for another three minutes. Then add one 1/2 cup homemade chicken stock and simmer yet another three minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of fair trade organic white cane sugar at the end and remove from heat.

In a medium frying pan saute one medium red onion, sliced vertically, with two sweet italian sausages and one hot italian sausages, casings removed and broken up. Meanwhile, dice 1/2 pound part skim mozzarella cheese into half inch chunks. Also cook one package penne pasta in salted boiling water. Toss Pasta, red sauce, cheese, and sausage mixture together and spoon into the squash cavities. Bake in the oven on 350 degrees for about 20 minutes until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley for garnish and serve.

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