Roasted Squash with Mushroom Stuffing and Mushroom Gravy

Exotic mushrooms, locally grown, lend this recipe protein and immune-boosting properties.

| January/February 2009

Roasted Squash with Mushroom Stuffing and Mushroom Gravy 
Makes about 4 cups stuffing 

Exotic mushrooms, locally grown, lend this recipe protein and immune-boosting properties.

2 medium acorn or delicata squash, cut vertically into four crescents, seed mass removed
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons canola or safflower oil
2 cups mixed exotic mushrooms such as shiitake, cremini and maitake, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup onion, finely diced
1 tablespoon butter
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves 1 cup unseasoned bread cubes, cut into ½-inch dice ¼ cup organic mushroom stock (see homemade recipe below)
Fresh thyme leaves, for garnish (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place squash in a lightly oiled 9-by-13-inch roasting pan. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover tightly with aluminum foil. Cook 45 minutes to an hour, or until flesh is tender. Keep warm until ready to serve.

2. Meanwhile, make stuffing: Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and onions; cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

3. Push mushrooms and onions to one side of skillet. Add butter, garlic and thyme in “empty” part of skillet and cook, stirring, just until garlic releases its fragrance and is pale golden, about 1 minute. Do not overcook or garlic will be bitter. Add bread cubes and mushroom stock, and mix in mushrooms and onions. Simmer gently until stock has been absorbed.

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