Roast Squash with Blue Cheese

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As the end of summer approaches a colourful variety of squash will arrive in the supermarket or local farmers markets. This recipe is vegetarian but can be adapted for meat lovers by adding some crispy fried bacon. Carmargue rice is a red brown coloured grain from France, is available in supermarkets but if you can’t get hold of it, brown basmati is just as good.

Serves 2

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes

1 large squash or 2 small ones (approximately 1.5kg total weight)
a drizzle of olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
25g pinenuts
25g almonds, roughly chopped
225g Carmargue rice, cooked
200g Stilton, crumbled
few sprigs fresh thyme

Preheat the oven to 190C or Gas Mark 5.

If using a large squash cut in half and scoop out the seeds. For two smaller squash, cut of the top of each and remove the seeds. Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and season with ground black pepper. Bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour until the flesh is tender.

Toast the pinenuts and almonds by ‘dry frying’ them in a small saucepan until they begin to brown. Keep an eye on the nuts as they can colour very quickly. Set aside.

Once the squash is cooked, scoop out the flesh, leaving a thin layer still attached to the skin of the squash. Transfer flesh to a bowl and roughly cut into chunks. Stir in the cooked rice, crumbled stilton and toasted nuts. Season and stir in the leaves removed from the sprigs of thyme.

Return the mixture to the empty squash and bake in the oven for a further 15 minutes.

HEALTH CHECK. Winter Squash contain high quantities of Vitamin A and C.