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La Belle Cuisine - More Vegetable Recipes

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"To cook is to create. And to create well...
is an act of integrity, and faith."


Sunburst Squash Stuffed with
Spinach and Gruyère



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Autumn Colors Abound in This Stack of Pumpkins and Squash
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La Belle Cuisine


Sunburst Squash Stuffed with
Spinach and Gruyère

From Squash – A Country Garden Cookbook
by Regina Schrambling, 1995, HarperCollins


"These colorful stuffed squash are meant as a side dish, but they can
also be served as a brunch or lunch main dish. The spinach, cheese and
shiitakes are good counterpoints to the nutty-tasting sunburst. Try the
same filling in large zucchini or yellow squash."

4 medium sunburst squash, each
3 1/2 to 4 inches in diameter
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
6 shiitake or button mushrooms,
stemmed and finely chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 large bunch fresh spinach leaves, carefully
washed and finely chopped
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Dash of cayenne pepper
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup grated Gruyère or Swiss cheese

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Fill a large pot three-fourths full of water and bring to a rolling boil.
Drop the squash into the boiling water and boil for 5 minutes. Drain
well and let cool.
Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each squash, removing just enough so
that it will stand upright. Then slice off the tops (approximately 1/2 inch
thick) and hollow out the centers, leaving a thin shell. Set aside. (Reserve
the nominal amount of squash removed from the centers for another use
or simply discard.)
In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter with the oil. Add the mushrooms, shallots and garlic and sauté approximately 10 minutes,
or until soft. Stir in the soy sauce and add the spinach. Raise the heat
to medium-high. Sauté for approximately 5 minutes, or until the spinach
is tender and most of the liquid has evaporated. Transfer to a bowl and
let cool slightly, then season with the nutmeg, cayenne, salt and black
pepper. Stir in the egg and 1/2 cup of the Gruyère and mix well.
Mound the mixture into the hollowed-out squash. Arrange in a single
layer in a baking dish just large enough to hold all the squash upright.
Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup cheese over the tops. Pour hot water
into the pan to a depth of 1/2 inch. Bake in the oven for approximately
30 minutes, or until the filling is set and the squash is tender. Serves 4.

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