Spicy Stuffed Acorn Squash; Essaouira

I was recently interviewed by Foody Direct as part of their Expert Interview program. Here is the interview….. And one of my favorite Zucchini Recipes. (It was summer when we did the interview.)

We all know I like stuffing vegetables – zucchinis and tomatoes in summer; peppers and winter squashes in autumn.

This acorn squash stuffing has a hint of Tex-Mex in it. As always, make it as hot as you like.

We also all know I have a wimpy palate.

The squash bakes while the stuffing is prepared and just needs 10 – 15 minutes to finish.

I normally roast the squash halves because I’m not in a rush and I prefer the flavor. You could microwave them and cut the overall time by 20 – 30 minutes.

I usually can’t get all of the stuffing in, so I keep it warm and serve it on the side.

Spicy Stuffed Acorn Squash

Total time: 60 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium acorn squash
  • 8oz (240gr) sausage, removed from casings
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 large green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 rib celery, chopped
  • 1 cup (8oz, 240gr) tomatoes, peeled, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 2 tsp olive oil

Spicy Stuffed Acorn Squash

Instructions:

  • Cut squash in half and scoop out seeds.  Either place face down on tray and microwave for 10 – 12 minutes or put into a baking dish, cover with foil and bake in 400F (200C) oven for 40 minutes.
  • While squash cooks: 
  • Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Sauté onion, pepper and celery 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic, spices and sauté 5 more minutes or until vegetables are tender and starting to brown.
  • Add sausage and sauté, breaking it up as it browns.
  • Add tomatoes, herbs and reduce heat. Cover and simmer 10 minutes or until needed.
  • To finish:
  • When squash are ready (they should be almost done) remove from wherever they cooked and fill with the sausage mixture.
  • Bake uncovered for 10 – 15 minutes, until stuffing starts to brown and squash is done.

Note: If the stuffing doesn’t all fit (depending on size of squash) keep it warm and serve on the side.

Print Recipe

After we left the tree with the goats we continued on to Essaouira, a lovely city on the coast about a 2 1/2 hour drive from Marrakesh.

essaouiraview

Marrakesh is the colors of the dessert with tan and rose buildings. Even the taxis are a golden-tan color.

Essaouira is blue and white – the colors of the sky.

essaouira2

Essaouira is an old port city with the 18th century ramparts still guarding the old town.

essaouira4

The walls still have intact towers and cannons.

essaouira

Between the outer walls and inner walls there are (of course) shops…. This is a tourist town, now, after all.

essaouira1

It’s a popular summer holiday spot for both French and Moroccans.

essaouira3

We had a fantastic seafood lunch on the beach and could easily have spent another day or two exploring.

A word on language:

There are two official languages in Morocco: Standard Arabic and Berber. But French is Morocco’s unofficial first language and is taught everywhere. Darija (Moroccan Arabic) is the spoken vernacular. Most, if not all, Moroccans will speak a smattering of Darija, Berber and French. In the hotels, souks and other places catering to tourists you will also hear English.

It was pointed out to us, however, that they guy in the souk (and it’s always a male, never a female) may speak perfect English when he recognizes an accent and says ‘You’re American! I can give you a good price. We like American shoppers,’ and so on….. But that is likely the extant of his English. If you asked him if he grew up on a farm you would likely get a blank look and a repeat of the ‘What color do you like?’ question.

Last update on October 28, 2015

7 thoughts on “Spicy Stuffed Acorn Squash; Essaouira”

  1. Yum! This reminds me of the stuffed delicata squash (stuffed with Flageolet Bean Cassoulet w/ Chili Wilted Turnip Greens, Oyster Mushrooms) last night at Rhubarb here in Asheville.

    You always come up with the best Katie!

    Chuck

  2. Kate, I think it would actually by good for breakfast lol

    brassfrog, sounds like you have great restaurants in Asheville! I have Delicata this year,,,, very nice little squashes, but none big enough to stuff for a main course. Could do a starter…..

    Thanks Sullimaybe 😉

    Ina, it was a beautiful town and great seafood! As to the shopping….. wonderful

  3. Great interview, Katie! Even though it featured a recipe using one of my least favourite squashes 😉

    But winter squashes ARE my favourite. And this stuffed squash sounds and looks wonderful.

    Your photos of Morocco are also wonderful; I really like the intense light. Ha! If the souk vendor knew you were an American living in France, would he still say that he likes you? And would the price go up or down?

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