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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Quinoa-Stuffed Scallop Squash

Quinoa-Stuffed Scallop Squash vegetarian pattypan


We are fortunate that within walking distance, there's an international farmer's market that is open on Sundays June through October. "International" because farmers/growers and vendors of Russian, Mexican, Hmong and Mien origin offer vegetables unique to their culture and ideally suited for their traditional dishes. Besides the fresh produce, there's usually music from various countries. A unicycle-riding bagpiper is a fixture as well - kids love to watch him perform - especially when he arranges to do a "flaming" bagpipe performance.

Quinoa-Stuffed Scallop Squash vegetarian pattypan


Anyway, I usually pick up veggies at random, whatever catches my fancy, and then decide how I am going to use them after safely settling them in my kitchen.

The scallop (aka patty pan) squashes were lovely. I couldn't resist. At 4 for a dollar, it felt like a steal.

Quinoa-Stuffed Scallop Squash vegetarian pattypan


Stuffed veggies are always fun. Stuffed peppers is a favorite. So, I decided to make stuffed scallop squash again. This time, the filling is veggie-loaded quinoa.

Ingredients
4 to 6 scallop squash

For the stuffing:
1 cup cooked quinoa
½ cup chopped colorful bell peppers
½ cup chopped green or red cabbage
½ red or yellow onion, diced finely
1 serrano chili chopped finely (optional)
salt to taste
1 Tbsp canola oil

Quinoa-Stuffed Scallop Squash vegetarian pattypan


Preparation

  1. Cut an opening at the stem part, save the top, and scoop the innards out of the scallop squash, leaving a fairly thick layer of flesh inside
  2. Steam or simmer the scallop squash (top as well) in salted boiling water for a few minutes till tender, and plunge in ice/cold water to prevent over-cooking, and to preserve its shape.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan, saute the onions, chilies and bell peppers, add the the cabbage, then the quinoa and cook till veggies are wilted a bit and yet still crunchy; adjust salt and herbs or other flavors to taste
  4. Scoop the quinoa mixture into the scallop squash, garnish with herbs and serve warm or at room temperature. I went with mint and fennel and some rosemary from my garden for garnish as those were the herbs I used for flavoring the quinoa as well, so carried over the same; but, even cilantro or parsley will be fine

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