Harvest Pilaf Acorn Squash with Fall Greens
Prep time: 1 hour
Two acorn squash, sliced in thirds lengthwise, seeds discarded
1/2 c. wheat berries (whole; adjust cooking time down if using cracked wheat)
1/4 c. wild rice (the real kind that takes 45 minutes to an hour to cook)
1 T. whole flax seed
Salt and pepper
1/4 t. ground ginger
Pinch of nutmeg
1 apple, cored, peeled, chopped coarsely
1/2 lemon (juice only)
1/2 orange (juice and 1 t. zest)
1/4 c. dried cranberries
1/4 c. butter
1 medium shallot, minced (will be anywhere from 2-4 T.)
1-2 t. maple syrup, to taste
1 lb. spinach, chard, or kale
Butter, salt, pepper, tarragon
1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Combine grains, seeds, salt and spices in 1 3/4 c. water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer 45 minutes to 1 hour until grains are soft and plump. Water will not be completely absorbed.
3. Sprinkle squash sections with salt and pepper and bake open side up in a wide dish until tender, about 50 minutes.
4. Peel and core one apple, then dice coarsely. Put diced apple in a bowl with juices of half a lemon and half an orange, and water just to cover. Microwave for two minutes to soften apples.
5. Meanwhile, mince garlic and sauté in 1 T. butter 3-4 minutes until golden. Remove to mixing bowl and stir in the orange zest. Put remaining butter and the maple syrup in the bowl, too. Set aside.
6. Add dried cranberries to the simmering grains.
6.5 Now go have a drink, set the table, check email. Really, you've got nothing but time now.
7. Once grain is done and the squash is tender, drain the grains and apples, and toss both in the mixing bowl with the butter, shallots, maple syrup, and orange zest. Check seasonings to taste.
8. Divide pilaf evenly into squash sections and put back in oven for ten minutes while you sauté some fresh chopped spinach, chard or kale with a little salt, pepper, butter and tarragon. Add 1/2 c. cream if you want to make a sauce for the greens. Serve squash and greens with a good fall wine like a big, fruity Zinfandel.
(Editor's note: This is DH's recipe, but I have no idea who possessed my husband to write the last sentence. We did not have a Zin last night, nor have we bought one in years. But it does sound like a good pairing!