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Dining Tip: Stuffed Butternut Squash

A humble fall vegetable is transformed into a sweet, spicy, smoky and tangy entree

Posted: October 7, 2013

Note: This recipe originally appeared in the August 31, 2013 issue of Wine Spectator.

Recipe courtesy of chef Scott Crawford, Herons, Cary, N.C.

• 2 red bell peppers
• 2 medium butternut squash, 1 to 1 1/2 pounds each, peeled, bottom removed and seeded
• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 5 tablespoons cold, cubed
• 1/2 pound fresh chorizo, crumbled
• 1/4 cup sweet onion, finely diced
• 1/2 cup crumbled corn bread
• 1 sprig fresh thyme, chopped
• 1 tablespoon chives, thinly sliced
• 1 pound fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined
• 2 shallots, finely diced
• 1/4 cup white wine
• 2 honey oranges, tangerines or clementines, peeled, seeded and segmented

1. Preheat the broiler to high, and place peppers in a roasting pan. Broil the peppers, turning occasionally, until charred. Remove the peppers from the oven, place in a paper bag and seal. Allow the peppers to steam until cool. Remove skins and seeds from the peppers, dice and reserve.

2. Preheat oven to 350° F. Cut top of each squash into 2 1-inch-thick discs. Lay the discs flat on a sheet pan and punch centers with a round cutter, leaving a 1/2-inch-thick ring. (Reserve squash trimmings.) Bake squash rings for 20 minutes or until fork-tender. Remove from oven and set aside.

3. In a medium saucepan, cover the bottom portion of the squash and trimmings with salted water and simmer over medium heat until soft. Strain and puree in a blender with 2 tablespoons of butter, and salt to taste.

4. In a sauté pan, brown the chorizo with onion and diced roasted peppers. Do not drain rendered fat. Add crumbled corn bread, thyme and chives, and season with salt and pepper.

5. In another sauté pan over medium heat, sauté shrimp with shallots in 1 tablespoon butter until cooked through. Add white wine and cook 30 seconds. Swirl in remaining butter, until sauce emulsifies. Add citrus segments and remove from heat.

6. Spoon chorizo stuffing into the squash rings, filling them until stuffing is even with the top of the rings. Place back in oven for 10 minutes. To plate, spoon squash puree in the center of each plate. Top the puree with stuffed squash. Place shrimp and buttered citrus on top of stuffed squash and spoon desired amount of sauce over the top. Serves 4.

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