Wheatless Wednesday – Roasted Maple Glazed Acorn Squash, Apples and Pecans over Rainbow Quinoa

Roasted Acorn Squash1

The time when you find the perfect balance between savory with a touch of sweet… By George, this is it!  Now if I could just find the same balance in my life all would be good, although we are trending in the right direction.  Next week my youngest turns 20, signaling the end of thirteen years of the ‘terrible teens’ which were both better and worse than I expected. Teenagers are actually pretty wonderful, young people (most of the time), they just happen to come with loads of friends (and friends of friends) with enormous appetites, and they use a lot of towels.   Alas, time marches on and we are finding our new balance, a lot of sweet and a bit of savory. Life is good…

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I loved this acorn squash way more than I was expecting and I didn’t even have the urge to add cheese.  This is a vegan dish that you will love and it will love you back by providing loads of healthy plant based  protein, vitamins and minerals! I got the inspiration from a recipe by Edible Perspective and added more savories like ‘sweet’ onion, fresh sage, elephant garlic and whole pecans. Somehow all the flavors come together.  I wouldn’t change a thing.  I have always loved the shape of acorn squash.  When cut into circles they remind me of cartoon flowers.  This dish can also be made super casual with everything chopped and cooked jumbled together in a baking dish (I often do this).  The flavors are still wonderful, but it’s less of a presentation.  I really love the visual of the circles and wedges. It’s kind of like a cross between serving halved squash and a vegetable medley.  The slices are certainly less of a commitment to eat than an entire half and since they are uniform in size, they take less time for that perfect cook.  You can also chop the apples, onions, garlic, sage and pecans and stuff the slices for an impressive presentation, although you may need to add an egg to keep the filling together .  I’m sure I will give that a whirl sometime soon, perhaps for Thanksgiving. Stay tuned!

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Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa (rainbow or plain)
2 cups vegetable broth
2 medium acorn squash
2 large cloves elephant garlic (optional)
2 large sweet onions
small bunch fresh sage
2 apples
3 Tbsn olive or coconut oil
1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/8-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
salt + pepper

Vinaigrette:

1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsn olive oil
2-3 teaspoons pure maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (optional)
salt + pepper to taste

Roasted Acorn Squash2

  • Preheat your oven to 425* F.  Rinse and cook quinoa, if making, in vegetable broth according to instructions. Cover and set aside.

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  • Cut acorn squash in half crosswise and scoop out seeds.

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  • Slice into 1/2 inch rings

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  • Cut elephant garlic into slices.

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  • Cut the dried roots off the onions leaving the  core intact (you want the slices to stay together).  Slice into thin wedges.

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  • Combine the oil, maple syrup and cayenne (if using) in a small bowl. Place squash, garlic and onions in a large lightly oiled baking dish and sprinkle/brush with oil misture to cover. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Place as many squash as possible in a single layer on the bottom of the pan for proper browning, even if you have to use two pans.
  • Roughly chop sage. Core and thinly slice apples.  Spritz with lemon juice if not using right away to prevent browning.

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  • Remove pan from oven. Turn vegetables. Add the apples, pecans and sage.  Bake another 10 to 15 minutes or until golden.  You can broil the last five minutes but watch the pecans because they can burn.

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  • Serve over quinoa and sprinkle with vinaigrette.

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Roasted Acorn Squash, Apples and Pecans over Rainbow Quinoa

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Roasted Acorn Squash1

Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa (rainbow or plain)
2 cups vegetable broth
2 medium acorn squash
2-3 large cloves elephant garlic (optional)
2 large sweet onions
small bunch fresh sage
2 apples
3 Tbsn olive or coconut oil
1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1/8-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
salt + pepper

Vinaigrette:

1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsn olive oil
2-3 teaspoons pure maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (optional)
salt + pepper to taste

  • Preheat your oven to 425* F.  Rinse and cook quinoa, if making, in vegetable broth according to instructions. Cover and set aside.
  • Cut acorn squash in half crosswise and scoop out seeds.
  • Slice into 1/2 inch rings
  • Slice elephant garlic into slices.
  • Cut the dried roots off the onions leaving the  core intact (you want the slices to stay together).  Slice into thin wedges.
  • Combine the oil, maple syrup and cayenne (if using) in a small bowl
  • Place squash, garlic and onions in a large baking dish and sprinkle/brush with oil misture to cover.  Place as many squash as possible in a single layer on the bottom of the pan for proper browning, even if you have to use two pans. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Roughly chop sage. Core and thinly slice apples.  Spritz with lemon juice if not using right away to prevent browning.
  • Remove pan from oven. Turn vegetables. Add the apples, pecans and sage.  Bake another 10 to 15 minutes or until golden.  You can broil the last five minutes but watch the pecans as they can burn.
  • Serve over quinoa and sprinkle with vinaigrette

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