VEGETABLE QUINOA STUFFED PUMPKIN
This recipe is great for Thanksgiving or for a party. It’s easy to make it vegan- just omit the cheese.
1 1/4 C quinoa
2 C water
8 inch diameter pumpkin
olive oil, salt, and pepper for pumpkin
1 1/2 T olive oil
1 medium onion, small dice
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 chile pepper (jalapeno, or pepper of choice), minced
1 medium large zucchini, small dice, about 2 C
1 frying pepper or bell pepper, yellow or orange, small dice
1/4 C packed fresh oregano leaves
1 tsp salt
generous black pepper
1/2 pound fontina cheese, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Put quinoa and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil with the cover off. Turn heat to medium, cook 7 minutes, turn off heat. Cover. Let sit for 10 minutes
3. Wash the pumpkin thoroughly. Cut open the top of the pumpkin as for a jack o’lantern, leaving as much of the edge and still making it easy to clean out the pumpkin seeds. Clean out pumpkin seeds. (Discard seeds, or toss in olive oil and salt and roast at 350 for 30 min, stirring occasionally.) Place pumpkin in a dutch oven (or on a parchment lined sheet pan). Drizzle olive oil, salt and pepper on the inside of the pumpkin.
4. Saute garlic and onion and chile pepper in olive oil on medium low covered until caramelized, stirring occasionally.
5. In a large bowl combine, cooked quinoa, cooked onion mixture, zucchini, frying pepper, oregano. Mix and season with salt and pepper, adjusting to taste.
6. Stuff pumpkin with quinoa vegetable mixture and top with fontina cubes.
7. Bake for 2 hours with the pumpkin top on (If this does not fit in the oven, bake the top alongside the pumpkin.)
8. Remove from the oven. Let cool 15 minutes. Stir pumpkin stuffing, and taste again for salt and pepper.
9. Cut the pumpkin into slices and serve topped with stuffing (or serve the stuffing first and eat the pumpkin after).
Serves 6-8 as a main and 8-12 as a side.
After the filling has been stirred: