Baked Acorn Squash with Dried Cranberries
A colorful Thanksgiving dish - and a relatively nutritious way to get the kids (and grownups) to eat their orange vegetables!
"So easy and very good just the way the best recipes should be. Thanks for sharing."- Elizhard32
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Baked Acorn Squash with Dried Cranberries Preparation
1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
2. Scrub and dry the squashes and pierce the shells of each in several places with a sharp knife.
3. Carefully cut each squash in half, using a sharp knife. (The squash halves will be cooked, cut side up, on a baking sheet. If needed, cut a very thin slice off the bottom of each half so they wil be level and stable while cooking.)
4. Scoop out the seeds and strings and discard. (Like pumpkin seeds, the seeds can be roasted whole and make a delicious snack.)
5. Place the squash halves on a baking sheet. Sprinkle the cavity with apple pie spice and fill the cavity with applesauce. (I prefer unsweetened applesauce; dried fruit and brown sugar will be added later and the dish can end up too sweet, I think.)
6. Bake the filled squash halves for 45 to 60 min (or longer, depending on the size of the squashes), until tender. (Teste for doneness by piercing the flesh with a knife.)
7. Allow the squash to cool thoroughly.
8. Scoop the flesh and applesauce into a large mixing bowl, taking care not to get any rind in the mix. Leave the flesh chunky, or mash it with a potato masher, if desired, for a more pureed consistency.
9. Add sweetened, dried cranberries (this is the most colorful choice), or you can use a package of mixed, dried fruit (pears, apples, prunes, apricots, etc.).
10. If needed, adjust the spices and sweeten with brown sugar.
11. Reheat just before serving, if desired.
Although not served in the shell, the dish's number of servings assumes 1 squash per 4 servings and can be scaled accordingly. Ingredient measurements and nutrition information are approximate and depend entirely on the size of the squashes that are used.
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