Butternut Squash and Cranberry Brown Rice

I’m baaaack!  I had an incredible time in San Francisco and ate many wonderful meals, including an 11 course Chinese banquet and at least 3 different flavors of wedding cake.  But then I came home to an empty refrigerator, and things went downhill quickly.  Trust me, it was nothing to blog about.

This was my first truly home cooked meal in almost 2 weeks, and it was so good.  I picked up some fresh cranberries, but I wanted to make something different than cranberry sauce.  A short while later, I found this recipe  (scroll down the page) and decided to go for it.  I liked the different textures, and the balance of sweet squash, tart cranberries, and spicy pepper.  It’s hearty enough for a vegetarian main dish, but could be a side dish for chicken or pork as well.

While I did use fresh cranberries, you might be surprised to find that I used frozen butternut squash.  Yes, this is squash season in New England, but I still needed to take a shortcut to make this meal happen.  With about 7 weeks left in the semester, I’ll take whatever shortcuts I need to put a warm meal on the table.



Butternut Squash and Cranberry Brown Rice

1 T canola oil
2 Vidalia onions, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, deseeded and diced
20 oz. butternut squash cubes
1 c. fresh cranberries
1/2 c. vegetable broth
1 1/2 c. diced celery
2 c. cooked brown rice
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper

Heat oil in a large frying pan.  Add onions and pepper, and saute for 10-15 minutes until lightly brown.  Add squash, cranberries, and broth.  Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.  Remove cover and stir in celery, rice, salt, and pepper.  Mix thoroughly and serve.

-Adapted from the Vegetarians of Washington

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