acorn squash stuffed with a warm farro and pine nut salad

Since moving to nyc, I have been fascinated with the unlimited amount of choices and variety in grocery stores farmers markets, speciality stores, and produce. I walk around this city like a kid in a candy store. Anything I can think of, I can find it here. It is wonderful, exciting, and at times can be overwhelming. 

Back where I lived in CT, there were not many choices. I had a Whole Foods down the street which was my go-to. There was also a small Italian speciality store that I enjoyed going to for fresh pasta and interesting produce. That was really it. I was always able to find what I needed. Comforting and predictable, but not very exciting.  

Now, I live a walking distance from the Union Square Greenmarket which is one of the great food experience of nyc. It runs 4 days a week, all year round. I try to make it there at least once a week, more if I can. I always end up with way more {ahem ... pastries} than I need. 

The following are some shots from my visit last week.  


While I was there I picked up a few acorn squashes, some lovely herbs, a couple of gorgeous golden apples, and a few vegan and gluten-free plums tarts + corn bread {which are not pictured because they were promptly devoured}.

I had some farro at home and was looking to stuff the squashes with a warm farro salad. It seemed like the perfect lunch for these brisk fall days that we've been having recently. 


acorn squash stuffed with a warm farro and pine nut salad

4 stuffed acorn squashes


for the roasted acorn squash:
4 whole acorn squashes, cut in half, seeds and pulp removed
a drizzle of grapeseed oil
a drizzle of good quality maple syrup
salt + pepper

for the warm farro salad:
1 cup of farro
3 cups of water
1 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of grapeseed oil
1 white onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup of pine nuts, roughly chopped 
1/4 cup of fresh chives, chopped
1/4 cup of fresh parsley, chopped
the juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
salt + pepper


 Start by roasting the squash: 

  • Pre-heat the oven to 425º
  • Prepare the acorn squashes. Place them on a parchment lined baking sheet and drizzle them with the grapeseed oil and maple syrup and season with salt and pepper. 
  • Cover the top with a piece of foil and place them in the oven for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes remove the foil and continue cooking for another 10, or until the inside is tender and the tops are starting to brown. Remove and set aside (covered) until the farro is ready to stuff.  

While the squash is roasting, prepare the warm farro salad:

  • Place the water and salt in a medium salt pan and add the farro. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the farro is tender (but not mushy) about 30 minutes. Drain, and set aside in a mixing bowl. 
  • Add the grapeseed oil to a small pan over medium heat, then add the onions and cook until they become translucent. Then add the garlic and pine nuts and cook for another couple of minutes until the pine nuts have been lightly toasted. 
  • Add the onion pine nut mixture to the bowl with the farro. Toss to combine. Add the remaining ingredients: chives, parsley, lemon, olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Taste and adjust any ingredients accordingly. 

Stuff the squash:

  • Using a spoon, fill the cavity of the squashes with a healthy helping of the farro salad. You want to fill them so they are overflowing over the top of the squash and onto the plate. Garnish with any additional fresh herbs or pine nuts. Serve warm.