Recipes

Stuffed Acorn Squash Two Ways – Three Sisters Part 1

posted by Allison Nuanes September 8, 2016
Stuffed Acorn Squash, Two Ways

Stuffed Acorn Squash, Two Ways

As we discussed the idea of starting the Tocabe blog, one of the aspects that excited us the most is the opportunity to share new recipes using native cooking methods and ingredients. We love experimenting and adding items to the menu at Tocabe on a regular basis, but the recipes that will be shared here on the blog go above and beyond – allowing you to create native inspired dishes at home for your family! It is a goal of ours to encourage curiosity, learning, and excitement for native foods and recipes. Sharing recipes here will allow us to do this with an even broader audience than we can reach at our restaurants, on our food truck, and through our catering.

This stuffed acorn squash is the first of several applications we will share in our series on Three Sisters. I’ll refer to Three Sisters quite a bit in this series and throughout the blog, so I’ll start off with a definition. Three Sisters represents the three main groups of crops grown by American Indians – beans, squash and maize (corn). Of course, there are many varieties of each of these crops, allowing for countless versions and applications of Three Sisters in home cooking. Because these ingredients have a long growing and harvest period, squash especially can be harvested from summer into winter, and corn and beans are easily preserved, meals made with Three Sisters can be enjoyed throughout the year. The harvest season is one of the best times for this wonderful combination, because the ingredients are fresh and plentiful.

Traditional Three Sisters Ingredients - squash, beans and corn.

Traditional Three Sisters Ingredients – squash, beans and corn.

This stuffed acorn squash dish can be enjoyed as a vegetarian entree or split into smaller portions as a side dish. This recipe presents the dish as an entree for two, but could be used without modification as a side dish for 4-6 people. In this recipe we will include two different fillings and dressings that can be used in this recipe – the options are really limitless. Please let us know if you make this at home! We would love to see pictures and hear about your experience sharing native recipes with your friends and family.

The Three Sisters - featuring butternut squash, hominy (corn), brown tepary beans, and pepitas.

The Three Sisters – featuring butternut squash, hominy (corn), brown tepary beans, and pepitas.


Print Recipe
Stuffed Acorn Squash, Two ways
A colorful and flavorful dish made with the traditional Three Sisters ingredients and a honey vinaigrette. Presented as an entree, but could also be served as a side dish for 4-6 people.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Roasted Squash
Zucchini/Yellow Squash and Corn Filling
Butternut Squash Filling
Honey Vinaigrette
Maple Vinaigrette
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Roasted Squash
Zucchini/Yellow Squash and Corn Filling
Butternut Squash Filling
Honey Vinaigrette
Maple Vinaigrette
Instructions
Prep Acorn Squash
  1. Light charcoals and bring up to temperature.
  2. Slice the acorn squash lengthwise and clean with a spoon to remove seeds. Rub with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Wrap squash halves in foil and place directly in hot charcoals. If you do not have a charcoal grill, they may be placed on a grill rack.
  4. Cook squash in charcoals or on grill for 45 minutes, checking and turning to ensure even cooking.
Zucchini/Yellow Squash Filling
  1. Heat grill to a medium high temperature.
  2. Slice both squash lengthwise and brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Place squash directly on clean grill, flesh side down.
  4. Clean corn and place directly on grill.
  5. Grill vegetables for 20-30 minutes, until good grill marks appear, making sure to turn the corn for even cooking.
  6. While the vegetables are grilling, cook tepary beans per package instructions.
  7. Slice grilled squash and corn. We like medium size, rustic chunks.
  8. Mix tepary beans with squash and corn and toss with a bit more salt and pepper, to taste.
Butternut Squash Filling
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. slice and clean seeds from butternut squash. Then cube squash and toss with olive oil and salt and pepper.
  3. Roast in oven in a pan or cast iron skillet for 12 minutes.
  4. Cook tepary beans per package instructions.
  5. Toss together squash, cooked tepary beans, hominy and pepitas. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Honey Vinaigrette
  1. Whisk together olive oil and apple cider vinegar until well combined.
  2. Whisk in honey to create an emulsion.
  3. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Maple Vinaigrette
  1. Whisk together olive oil and apple cider vinegar until well combined.
  2. Whisk in maple syrup to create an emulsion.
  3. Blend in food processor such as a magic bullet with 1 Tbsp pepitas. Taste and add more pepitas for a creamier texture.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Presentation
  1. Fill acorn squash halves with filling of choice.
  2. Top with dressing.
  3. Serve with optional garnishes - roasted green chiles, red onion, grilled green onions, etc.
Recipe Notes

This recipe has several different versions. It's truly a "choose your own adventure" recipe that can be done any way you wish. Each filling presented here is delicious on its own as well, or served over quinoa for another healthy and filling option.

Some of our recommended ingredient sources are listed below. Each comes from native producers:

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