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Vegetarian Barley Stuffed Squash

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Like acorn squash and stuffed squash dishes? Make a healthy vegetarian and high-fiber stuffed acorn squash using a stuffing of whole grain barley and veggies. For a vegan version, use olive oil or a vegan margarine instead of butter. Recipe courtesy of the National Barley Foods Council.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 1/4 cup butter, olive oil or vegan margarine, divided
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 2 medium acorn squash, halved and with seeds removed
  • salt, to taste

Preparation:

In large saucepan over medium heat, sautee barley, onion, celery and carrot in 2 tablespoons butter until barley is lightly browned. Add vegetable broth and thyme. Bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 45 minutes or until barley is tender and liquid is absorbed.

In the meantime, place squash halves in greased baking dish, cut-side down. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until squash is tender. Remove squash from oven and turn, cut-side up. Sprinkle lightly with salt.

Spoon equal portions of cooked barley mixture into centers of squash. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons melted butter, olive oil or vegan margarine.

Return filled squash halves to oven. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes longer. Makes 4 generous side dish or entree servings.

Per serving: calories 408, protein 12g, fat 13g, carbohydrates 67g, cholesterol 32mg, fiber 9g, sodium 731mg.

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