Saturday, August 2, 2014

Sausage Stuffed Summer Squash

The plethora of summer squash from the CSA is now in full swing! I love that raw zucchini carpaccio, but summer squash cooks so beautifully that I couldn't leave that alone - plus you have to have some variety, right? This dish is great for dinner parties. I've seen similar dishes recommended for side dishes, but if you get the big, round variety of squash, it's a stunning a main course and is plenty of food. This is also an easy one to make vegetarian or gluten free. To make it vegetarian, substitute the insides of the squash and a quart of mushrooms for the meat and double the Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes. To make it gluten free, substitute quinoa for the bulgur.

  • 4 small, round summer squash
  • 1 small yellow onion, copped
  • 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 2 links (1/2 lb) spicy Italian chicken sausage, raw
  • 1 28 oz can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 c cooked bulgur
  • 1/4 c Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375F. Cut the tops off of the squash. Scoop out the insides and set aside. (These can be used for a vegetarian version of this dish or used in zucchini bread or zucchini bites.) Spray insides of squash with olive oil cooking spray. Season with salt and pepper. Stand upright and open in a small baking pan. Add tops of squash to pan. Add water to 1/4 inch high in the pay. Roast in oven until squash is fork-tender, approximately 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat large saute pan over medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Add onions, Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes and rosemary. Saute until onions are just turning translucent. Cut sausage out of links and add to saute pan, breaking apart as you go. When sausage is beginning to brown, add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium low. Cook over medium low heat until liquid reduces by half, approximately 25 minutes. Stir in bulgur. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for an additional 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove squash from oven. Drain any liquid remaining in the pan. Fill squash with sausage mixture. Spread additional sausage mixture on squash tops. Sprinkle each with Parmesan cheese. Roast for approximately 10 minutes, until cheese is beginning to brown. 

Remove stuffed squash from oven and transfer to plates. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese if desired.

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