Khorasan Stuffed Kabocha Squash

Stuffed Kabocha Squash

Tender kabocha pumpkin brimming with ginger-apple, Khorasan stuffing is a perfect holiday side. Stuffed kabocha squash even works as a main dish!

Stuffed squash has been a plant-based holiday staple basically since vegans have existed, but this stuffed kabocha squash has grown up a lot from that old staple. It’s packed with toothsome Khorasan, sweet apples and cranberries, and lots of ginger and apple flavor! This dish takes some time to make, but it is so worth it!

This recipe was developed by Becky Striepe. Becky is passionate about creating plant-based recipes that are easy, practical and delicious! We have had the pleasure of creating several recipes with Becky and we are excited to share another!

Ingredients for Stuffed Kobacha Squash

Ingredients for Stuffed Kabocha Squash
  • Oil – To sauté. You can use spray oil or broth fry if you want to omit the oil.red onion and garlic – These sautéed aromatics give the stuffing so much amazing umami flavor! You can use a sweet onion instead of a red onion, if needed.
  • Ginger – Fresh ginger is one of the stars of this show! Do not omit. Fresh really is best, but you can use a teaspoon of ground ginger, in a pinch.
  • Khorasan berries – Be sure to soak the Khorasan before using, either in hot water for an hour or, ideally, overnight.
  • Apple – I like a sweet, red apple, like a Fuji or Gala for this recipe.
  • Salt and Pepper – To season the stuffing.
  • Sliced Almonds – Add protein and crunch! You can omit this for a nut-free version.
  • Dried Cranberries – These add such a nice tart-sweetness. You can substitute other dried fruit, like chopped dried apricots.
  • No-Chicken Broth – I love how the flavor of vegan chicken broth works here, but you can use regular vegetable broth if you can’t find it.
  • Apple Juice – Adds so much sweet, apple-y flavor! It also adds moisture to cook the Khorasan.
  • Kabocha Squash/Kabocha Pumpkin – This is a type of winter squash, and it’s my absolute favorite! It’s so sweet and starchy, almost like a lighter version of a sweet potato. If you can’t find kabocha squash, you can use an acorn squash instead.
  • Spray Oil – You want to oil the squash before roasting it, so it doesn’t dry out. Just spray with spray oil to coat it well.
  • Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Salt, and Pepper – You’ll rub this spice mix all over the inside of the kabocha pumpkin before roasting and stuffing it. It gives it an amazing flavor!!

Kobacha Squash Stuffing instructions

 

How to Make Stuffed Kabocha Squash

– Make sure that you’ve soaked your Khorasan either overnight or for an hour in hot water, so you’ll have the best texture when you’re done cooking!

– Start by getting the Khorasan stuffing going on the stovetop.

– Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic, and a good pinch of salt, and sauté until the onion cooks down some and is translucent. Stir frequently, so the garlic won’t burn. This takes around seven to 10 minutes.

– Add the remaining stuffing ingredients — except the broth and juice — to the pan, tossing to coat really well, and cook for just a minute to toast the Khorasan lightly. Stir in the vegetable broth and apple juice, and cover the pot.

– Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 45 to 55 minutes, until the Khorasan is fully cooked. Remove the pan from the heat, cover the pot again with the lid if you opened it up, and set this aside to steam for 15 to 20 minutes.

– Taste and add more salt, if needed. If there’s a lot of excess liquid in the pot, transfer the stuffing to a colander to drain before stuffing it back into the squash. Don’t worry, it still tastes delicious after draining! Khorasan can vary a lot in how much water it soaks in, so I like to err on the side of too much liquid.

– While that simmers, get the squash going.

– Preheat the oven to 400° F, and mix together the garlic, onion, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.

– Slice the top off of the squash and remove the seeds and guts from inside. If you’re having trouble getting those guts out, scrape them away with a metal spoon.

– Spray the squash all over with oil, making sure to spray the flesh around the top so it doesn’t dry out, then rub on the spice mixture that you just made.

– Place the pumpkin, cut-side-up on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until it’s fork-tender and a little browned on the edges.

– When the squash is done roasting, remove it from the oven. Fill it with the stuffing, then place the whole thing back into the oven for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Kobacha Squash Stuffing instructions

 

Helpful tips For Making Stuffed Kabocha Squash
  • Do not skip soaking the Khorasan! It makes a huge difference in the finished product.
  • Be careful when you’re slicing into the kabocha pumpkin! Use a large, sharp knife, and remove the top, just like you would for a Jack-o-lantern.
  • Don’t panic if it feels like there’s too much liquid when the stuffing finishes cooking. With Khorasan, too much liquid is better than not enough. You can just drain off the excess in the colander before using the stuffing.
How to Store Leftover Stuffed Kabocha Squash

Leftovers will keep for three to five days in the refrigerator. You can reheat in the oven or in the microwave, or eat it cold, like a salad.

Why Should I Use Khorasan to As Stuffing for Kabocha Squash?

If you’re new to Khorasan, it’s a hearty whole grain that you may know as Kamut. But Kamut is actually just a brand name for this ancient grain.
Khorasan is an ancient ancestor to modern wheat, like einkorn and emmer. Also like those grains, the gluten in Khorasan is easier to digest, tho it still is not suitable for people with celiac disease.
This grain is so ancient that we don’t exactly know its exact origins, though general consensus seems to be that it originated somewhere in the Middle East. The name Khorasan is the name of a province in Iran where it grows.
Here in the U.S., a Montana farmer named Bob Quinn popularized the grain, selling it under the name Kamut in the 1980s.
Like Xerox and copy machines or Kleenex and tissues, the brand name became synonymous with the product, but the actual name of this ancient grain is Khorasan.
Khorasan berries are large, and when they cook up they have a nutty flavor and toothsome texture that makes them so satisfying in dishes like this stuffed kabocha pumpkin!

Stuffed Kobacha Squash

Where can I buy Khorasan?

At Grand Teton Ancient Grains, we offer a wide variety of ancient grains, including Khorasan, on our online store! We do everything we can to ensure that we deliver the highest quality product available. All of the grains we sell are grown 100% organically which means that we don’t use any chemicals, herbicides, pesticides, or glyphosate on our crops as they are being grown. Visit our online store today and stock your kitchen with delicious and nutritious ancient grains!

Organic Khorasan Berries

 

More Recipes by Becky Striepe

Banana Blueberry Einkorn Muffins
Peaches and Cream Splet Porridge
Instant Pot Emmer Pilaf 

Stuffed Kobacha Squash

Prep Time1 hour
Cook Time1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time2 hours 20 minutes

Ingredients

For the Khorasan stuffing

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups chopped red onion
  • 3 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1" piece ginger - minced
  • ½ cup Khorasan berries - soaked overnight or for 1 hour in hot water
  • 1 apple - cored and chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ cuo dried cranberries - or other dried fruit of choice like chopped, dried apricots
  • 1 cup no-chicken broth - or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup apple juice

For the kabocha squash

  • 1 large kabocha squash
  • spray oil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

Instructions

    Make the Khorasan stuffing.

    • Soak your Khorasan either overnight or for an hour in hot water, so you'll have the best texture when you're done cooking!
    • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic, and a good pinch of salt, and sauté until the onion cooks down some and is translucent. Stir frequently, so the garlic won't burn. This takes around 7 to 10 minutes.
    • Add the remaining stuffing ingredients -- except the broth and juice -- to the pan, tossing to coat really well, and cook for just a minute to toast the Khorasan lightly. Stir in the vegetable broth and apple juice, and cover the pot.
    • Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 45 to 55 minutes, until the Khorasan is fully cooked. Remove the pan from the heat, cover the pot again with the lid if you opened it up, and set this aside to steam for 15 to 20 minutes.
    • Taste and add more salt, if needed. If there’s a lot of excess liquid in the pot, transfer the stuffing to a colander to drain before stuffing it back into the squash. Don’t worry, it still tastes delicious after draining! Khorasan can vary a lot in how much water it soaks in, so I like to err on the side of too much liquid.

    Meanwhile, roast the kabocha squash.

    • Preheat the oven to 400° F, and mix together the garlic, onion, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
    • Slice the top off of the squash and remove the seeds and guts from inside. If you're having trouble getting those guts out, scrape them away with a metal spoon.
    • Spray the squash all over with oil, making sure to spray the flesh around the top so it doesn't dry out, then rub on the spice mixture that you just made.
    • Place the pumpkin, cut-side-up on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until it's fork-tender and a little browned on the edges.

    Assemble and serve.

    • When the squash is done roasting, remove it from the oven. Fill it with the stuffing, then place the whole thing back into the oven for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

    Notes

    Notes
    If you can't find kabocha squash, you can use an acorn squash instead. Prepare the same way, but baking time will be closer to 30 to 40 minutes.
    Leftovers will keep for 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator. You can reheat in the oven or in the microwave, or eat it cold, like a salad.

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