As a winter squash lover, kabocha and delicata will most certainly always take the cake in my squash selection.
However, there are times when creating a bit of excitement and a little kitchen carnival craze becomes necessary.
~ So enters the Carnival Squash:
The Carnival squash is distinguished by its deeply furrowed top-shape and of course, its variegated patterns of orange and green hued fall colors. The Carnival squash’s thick exterior contains spotted and striped colors of white, orange, yellow and green, depending on its level of maturity. The presence of post-harvest green coloring indicates that the squash is still at its peak maturity. As the squashes ages, it will eventually only maintain orange and cream colors. The raw flesh of the Carnival squash is pale orange in color with a large and fibrous seed cavity. It is semi-dry and firm in texture, fragrant and its flavoring, mild. The squash’s true flavors only emerge once cooked. Then its flesh becomes richer, buttery, nutty and sweet. –
Besides the carnival crazy look and display of beauty this luscious squash entreats, my favorite part and allure of the wintery treat’s description, ” fragrant and its flavoring, mild. The squash’s true flavors only emerge once cooked. Then its flesh becomes richer, buttery, nutty and sweet.”
Once I’m ‘cooked,’ I like to say that I become richer, buttery, nutty, and sweet.
Anyway, a sweet and savory punch added and stuffed to this carnival madness creates a spectacular meal!
Carnival Crazy Sausage Stuffed Squash
1 small carnival squash, top removed and seeds scooped and discarded
1-2 Tbs. Kerrygold pastured butter
1/4 sweet onion, finely diced
1 c. grated cauliflower
2 large crimini mushrooms, diced (or finely chopped)
1 large breakfast sausage link (savory sage and maple works best)
1/4 tsp. dried sage
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
sea salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prepare the squash and bake uncovered for 35-45 minutes, until soft and crispy brown on top. Meanwhile, over medium heat, melt the butter and sauté onion, cauliflower “rice,” and mushrooms. Add the sausage (if already precooked – OR completely cook through in a separate pan and then add). Add spices and salt and pepper.
Serve the sauté stuffed inside the carnival squash for a bit of crazy carnival madness!