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Moroccan Stuffed Squash
Moroccan Stuffed Squash Reprinted with permission from "The Sprouted Kitchen" by Sara Forte, copyright 2012. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc. Photo courtesy of Hugh Forte

Sara Forte knows how to take a whole-foods approach to eating well. On Sprouted Kitchen, the blog she produces with her photographer husband, Hugh, the California writer celebrates the simple beauty of seasonal ingredients and dishes made from fresh produce, whole grains, unsaturated fats and natural sugar alternatives. Now, the couple has gifted us with a new collection of nourishing recipes in their just-released cookbook. We started our whole-foods tour with Sara’s stuffed squash. The clever cook turns roasted acorn squash into edible bowls, then fills the cavities with a Moroccan-inspired quinoa salad. The satisfying vegetarian supper will serve you well for many fall nights to come.

Makes 4 servings

2 medium acorn squash

3 tablespoons coconut oil, divided

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

One 13.5-ounce can light coconut milk

1 cup quinoa

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

¼ teaspoon ground coriander

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

½ cup feta cheese, plus more for garnish

½ cup pomegranate seeds

3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves

2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest

2 tablespoons finely chopped mint leaves

2 tablespoons orange juice

½ cup roughly chopped toasted pistachios (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 425°. Cut the acorn squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Rub 1 tablespoon of the coconut oil on the cut sides of the squash halves, then season with salt and pepper.

2. Place the squash, cut side down, on a baking sheet and pierce the skin a few times with a fork. Roast for 20 minutes. Flip the squash over and continue cooking, cut side up, until you can easily poke a knife through the flesh at the thickest part of the squash, about 10 minutes longer, depending on the size of your squash. Remove the squash from the oven and let cool slightly.

3. While the squash are cooking, in a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat, combine the coconut milk with a pinch of salt and pepper and bring to a gentle boil. Add the quinoa, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the quinoa steam in the saucepan for 5 minutes.

4. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons coconut oil, the paprika, coriander and cumin to the quinoa and toss to combine. Add the feta, pomegranate seeds, cilantro, lemon zest, mint and orange juice, then toss until just combined. Taste, then season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary.

5. Divide the mixture among the cavities of the squash. Garnish with a sprinkle of feta and the pistachios, if using. Serve immediately.

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