It's squash season, friends! If you are like me, you love squash, but just can't think of enough different things to do with it. It's delicious by itself, sure, or roasted with some veggies, but I love new and unique ways to enjoy squash, and this recipe certainly fits the bill. The sweet sausage, the tart apples, nutty Pecorino Romano cheese, and finished off with a drizzle of our Tuscan Balsamic Vinegar for a little extra tang, this recipe will quickly become one of your favorites!
Sausage & Apple Stuffed Tuscan Acorn Squash
2 medium sized acorn squash
1 pound ground sweet Italian sausage
3 cups chopped tart apples
1-1/4 cup shredded Pecorino Romano cheese, divided
¼ cup Italian Herb Olive Oil
6 tablespoons butter
¾ cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
2 cups chicken stock
½ tsp Smoked Bacon Sea Salt
3/4 tsp black pepper, divided
2 tsp dried sage
4 tbsp Tuscan Balsamic Vinegar
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cut the acorn squash in half lengthwise and scoop the seeds out with a metal spoon. Season the squash with 2 tbsp of olive oil, the smoked bacon sea salt, and ¼ tsp of black pepper. Turn the squash cut side down on a baking tray. Bake in for 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes.
Sauté the sausage in 2 tbsp of the olive oil over medium heat, using a wooden spoon to break up any large pieces. After around 10 minutes, add in the chicken stock, sage, and ½ tsp of pepper. Scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to dislodge all the flavorful brown pieces.
Add the chopped apples and 2 tbsp of butter to the pan and cook for 3 minutes to let the butter melt. Add 1 cup of the Pecorino Romano cheese and the breadcrumbs to the pan and mix it all together well. The mixture will be wet.
When the acorn squash have finished baking, turn them back over. They should be soft when pierced with a fork. Stuff the squash with the sausage and apple mixture, pile on as high as you can.
Add 1 tbsp of butter on top of each squash. Lightly cover with foil and bake for 35-45 minutes at 400 degrees, or until the flesh of the squash is nice and tender and mixture is baked through.
Top with remaining ¼ cup shredded Pecorino Romano cheese, drizzle each squash half with 1 tbsp Tuscan Balsamic Vinegar and serve.