butternut squash with black rice stuffing


well, the detox has been finished for a week and although i’m retaining some of my good habits (snacking on junk is still off the menu as are tea and coffee) i’ve enjoyed being able to indulge some of my cravings. sunday night’s supper was a perfect example – homemade pizza with spicy salami toppings. the rich cheesy and meaty flavours coupled with the heat of peppadew peppers really hit the spot!

similarly good was this roasted butternut squash stuffed with black rice. except in this case, apart from the melted mozzarella topping, it was as detox friendly as it goes. it’s even gluten-free. i guess some of my cooking habits are still on track, even if i’m not!


roasted butternut squash with black rice stuffing (serves 4)

2 medium butternut squashes

250g black rice

vegetable stock made with 1 teaspoon bouillon powder and 500ml water

50g butter

1 large red onion, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic finely chopped

2 red chillies, finely chopped

25g porcini, soaked until soft then drained

125g sunblush tomatoes, chopped

25g toasted pinenuts

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

1 ball of mozzarella

preheat the oven to 200c.

halve and deseed the squashes. brush them all over with a little olive oil and place cut-side down on a baking tray. roast for 25-30 minutes until the flesh is tender. when the squash is cool enough to handle, remove the flesh from the skin, apart from a layer about 5mm thick (this will help the squash keep it’s shape. mash the squash roughly so there are no large lumps.

meanwhile bring the stock to the boil, add the rice and simmer until the rice is cooked (about 30 minutes). drain and set aside.

melt the butter and add the onion, garlic, chilli and porcini and gently fry for 5 minutes until the onion is cooked. remove from the heat and add the sunblush tomatoes, pinenuts and thyme. mix this with the rice and mashed squash.

use the rice mix to stuff the squash and top with mozzarella. place the squash on a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes until heated through. serves with roasted cherry tomatoes and salad.