Here, pureed sweetcorn, stir fried mushrooms and a few spinach leaves are mixed into amaranth that has been cooked in stock. The result is a sweet savoury porridge that is just perfect in baked squash. A sharp strong cheese to top it all cuts through the sweetness. Delicious!
Although harvested in autumn, squash that is stored well lasts a long time, so it is available all year round. Whilst sweet corn is harvested in summer, it is well preserved by canning and freezing and is also available all year round. Mushrooms and spinach are also grown easily in barns and polytunnels at this time of year. So whatever time of year – this dish is a winner! Use any small to mid sized squash for this (for example, celebration squash, acorn squash, small butternut…)
Without the spinach, this dish could be too sweet, but the bit of green not only makes this dish more colourful – it adds just a hint of bitterness to balance it. You could swap this spinach for any greens you have – kale, chard, collard greens. The cheese also helps cut through the sweetness of this dish.
Make it vegan
If you want to make this vegan, just leave out the cheese and add 1 tbsp of nutritional yeast into the amaranth instead. This should add that savoury flavour and still cut through a bit of the sweetness of the dish.
Amaranth, mushroom, sweetcorn and spinach stuffed squash
- 1 Saucepan
- 1 frying pan
- Blender for pureeing sweetcorn
- 2 squash small to medium size
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 200 g amaranth
- 700 ml stock
- 285 g sweetcorn (drained weight of 340 g tin)
- 250 g chestnut or forestiere mushrooms
- 50 g spinach
- 50 g strong cheddar cheese
- Preheat the oven to degrees Celsius.
- Cut the squash in half and scoop out all the seeds with a spoon. Place on a baking tray and brush the flesh with olive oil and add a little seasoning. Cook in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place the amaranth and stock in a saucepan, bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Chop the mushrooms and stirfry them until the juices start to be released.
- Puree the sweetcorn.
- Once the amaranth is cooked and looking like a porridge, stir in cooked mushrooms and juice, pureed sweetcorn and spinach and remove from the heat.
- Once the squash is starting to brown, fill the inside with the amaranth porridge and top with grated cheese. Place back in the oven for 10 minutes until the cheese is melted and golden.