Friday, January 3, 2014

Pecan, Squash and Cranberry Speckled Wild Rice

For the past year, my husband and I have been trying our best to eat healthier while trying new things.  The only way I ate squash before our adventures were to roast it and add butter and brown sugar.  I didn't know how awesome it would be to add squash in other dishes.  It made sense to try out this idea as squashes generally are very healthy for you.  We came across this recipe, again on Pinterest (my favorite cookbook).   I would like to note that this recipe wasn't the clearest and I think I got more rice than expected since I made mine from scratch.


1/2 C Brown Rice, dry
1/2 C Wild Rice, dry
2 1/2 C Water
1 Small Acorn or Butternut Squash, peeled and cubed (about 2 C)
2/3 C Pecan Halves
1/2 Shallots or Sweet Onions, chopped
1 Clove Garlic, minced
2 Small Carrots, peeled and sliced at the bias
2 Stalks Celery, chopped
1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme, chopped
1/2 C Dried Cranberries
A Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
1 Tbsp Butter
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a rice cooker, prepare Brown Rice and Wild Rice with water.  It takes about 30-50 minutes to cook rice depending on your cooker.  I also like to butter the sides of the pan the rice goes in to cook so nothing sticks.  I add a little bit of sea salt as well to enhance the flavor.  When done cooking, add to a large mixing bowl.

In a greased jelly roll pan, roast squash in the oven at 450 degrees f for 20-25 minutes or until browned. When done, add to bowl with rice mix. While squash is cooking, heat a large skillet on top of the stove at low-medium heat.  Add Pecans and cook until aromatic.  Watch these closely as they go from a nice toast to burnt within a minute.  Transfer nuts to a chopping board and allow to cool.  Chop nuts and add to rice mix.

With the same skillet, turn the heat to medium-high heat.  Heat butter.  Add Shallots or Onions and Garlic and saute until soft. Add Celery, Carrots and Red Pepper Flakes.  Stir briskly and cook for 2 minutes.  Add to rice mix.  To the rice mix, add Thyme, Cranberries, Salt and Pepper and toss to combine.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  The flavors mix well with time so it gets better if you let it sit and then serve it slightly warmed.

Recipe from (suganya is the name?).  I made my own Wild Rice mix with Brown Rice.

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