It’s that time of year again – when your garden, grocer, or CSA basket is full of winter squash. As much as we love the flavor, coming up with new ways to get through the bounty can be challenging. Our baked acorn squash dish is presented in pear filled rings, over quinoa for some protein, and incorporates a fruity little merlot for October’s #merlotme month.
Just look at this beauty we got in our basket from Pitchfork and Crow.
This sample of 2014 Trig Point Merlot arrived at just the right time. Produced from a single vineyard, Diamond Dust, in Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley, this wine is soft juicy red berries with a little bit of a pucker and warm baking spices. These flavors were good in the glass and easy additions to the meal as the wine snuck its way into our baked acorn squash recipe.
- 1 acorn squash cut into 4 rings, unpeeled
- ⅓ cup chopped red onion
- 1 medium pear, diced
- 1 tsp plus ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp plus ⅛ tsp allspice
- ¼ tsp plus ⅛ tsp nutmeg
- pinch hot red pepper powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- 3 Tbs dried cranberries
- ½ cup merlot
- 3 Tbs butter
- Heat 1 Tbs butter in skillet and saute onion and pears until beginning to soften. Add 1 tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp allspice, ¼ tsp nutmeg, hot red pepper, and ¼ tsp salt. Stir until fragrant. Add merlot and dried cranberries. Allow to simmer on low heat until most of the liquid has reduced.
- Meanwhile melt 2 Tbs butter in a saucepan. Season with ¼ tsp cinnamon, ⅛ tsp allspice, ⅛ tsp nutmeg, and another pinch of hot red pepper powder depending on how hot you like it.
- Line a baking pan with parchment. Brush undersides of squash rings with melted butter. Fill centers with onion and pear mixture. Drizzle rest of butter over squash rings. Cover with foil. Bake 40 minutes at 350 degrees or until squash is soft and cooked through.
- To serve, place on mound of tricolor quinoa.