Thursday, 5 November 2009

An Autumn Dance . . .



Come said the wind to

the leaves one day,
come o're the meadows
and we will play.
Put on your dresses
Scarlet and gold,
For summer is gone
And the days grow cold.
~A Children's Song of the 1880's

This morning, I thought I'd share a few photos of the area around my house taken this past week. The colours are so very beautiful. The leaves are falling fast now and soon all the trees will be bare. I hope you enjoy this little glimpse of my heaven on earth in all it's autumn splendour.

Click to play An Autumn Dance
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I have long been a fan of twice baked jacket potatoes and the other day I thought to myself . . . hmmm . . . why not stuff a butternut squash. This turned out to be a wonderfully delicious experiment in taste, that I hope you will find the time to make and enjoy for yourself! To serve, just spoon out the filling onto your plates and serve along side of some steamed Basamati Rice and a lovely mixed salad. Enjoy!



*Twice Baked Butternut Squash*
Serves 2
Printable Recipe

A delicious recipe which is written for two, but will very easily multiply to feed more. Just use a larger squash, increase the initial baking time and double the stuffing ingredients!
This is a real winner!

one butternut squash, about 2 pounds in weight
1/2 cup of frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed completely dry
1 TBS butter
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp white pepper
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
1/2 cup toasted walnut halves, toasted and coarsely chopped
3 ounces of gruyere cheese, grated
olive oil to drizzle

Pre-heat the oven to 180*C/350*F. Cut the butternut squash in half lengthwise, and scoop out all the seeds and fibrous bits and discard them. Place the two halves onto a baking sheet and bake in the oven until quite tender, approximately 1/2 hour to 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside for a few minutes, until cool enough to handle.

With a metal spoon, carefully scrape out the flesh of the squash, leaving about 1/4 inch border around one of the halves. (You will only be stuffing the one half. Discard the skin from the other half.) Mash the flesh until fairly smooth, along with the 1 TBS of butter.

Squeeze as much water as you can from the spinach leaves, and then chop them coarsely. Stir them into the squash along with the seasonings, thyme, walnut pieces and the gruyere cheese. Pile this stuffing into the remaining squash half.

Increase the oven temperature to 200*C.400*F. Place the stuffed squash half onto a shallow baking tray and pop it back into the oven. Bake it for about 15 to 20 minutes until the filling is completely heated through, and starting to brown a bit on the top. Remove from the oven, drizzle with a little bit of olive oil and serve.

I usually serve this with some steamed Basamati rice and a mixed salad on the side. It truly is delicious!



There are even more warming treats for Bonfire Night over on The English Kitchen this morning! A delicious Cabbage Soup with Cheese, and some taste tempting Cheddar and Chive Scones!

Happy Bonfire Night everyone!!

12 comments:

Julie Harward said...

Oh...you are so full of good ideas..the squash sounds so yummy! I love stuffed anything...especially me with good food like this! The slide show is very beautiful! :D

Kath said...

Loved the smilebox Marie,I sent you a comment on there.Mmmm now that soup and the scones sound delicious.I must take a wander over there.I adore soup when it's cold,and it's certainly a very chilly morning here today Brrr.You yourself keep warm.Take Care God Bless Kath xx

Tracy said...

Lovely autumn glory where you are, Marie... Oh, how we miss you all and Kent! :o) Butternut squash... I love it! And stuffed--even better! Wonderful recipe...mmm... Can't wait to stop over for your soup recipe today today! Happy Day, dear friend--LOVE YOU HEAPS!! ((BIG HUGS))

Martha said...

What a lovely idea -- twice baked butternut squash! Yum!

Rhondi said...

Good morning Marie
The scrapbook of photos was wonderful.. DId it take a long time to make it? My husband doesn't like squash but I'm going to try this recipe on him. Maybe I can coax him to change his mind!
Hugs, Rhondi

Cathy said...

Hi! Marie ~
I love the idea of this recipe, going to try it :)
and I love Basamati rice - yumm...
Hugz,
Cathy

Julie said...

Beautiful fall images, Marie--what a lovely spot in the world you live in! The squash recipe is perfect--can't wait to try it!

The Blonde Duck said...

That's a wonderful idea!!!

Sybil said...

Maria thank you so much for sharing these lovely autumn colours with us. I just love using the "smilebox" Never though that I might be able to put one on my blog...knowing me I probably coud'nt !!!
Fairly quiet evening here so far only the odd firework going off so Dee is not in his usual tizzy.. I expct all is quiet wih you...hope so anyway....did the wee ones up at the big house dress for halloween ?
Love Sybil xx

Valerie said...

Gorgeous photos!

jenjen said...

Beautiful pictures Marie! I love the way the leaves fall down and turn into the picture and the music. Wonderful!

XOXO
jen

Great-Granny Grandma said...

Isn't Smilebox great? I just love it. It has to have been one of my best online discoveries to date.

And isn't it amazing that even though we live half a world apart, the glorious colors of fall are still the same?