Do you love to turn left-overs into something new and interesting? It’s almost an art form! With a bit of creativity you can whip up a dish in minutes that looks like you slaved for an hour or more.
This is one of those quick and impressive-looking dishes. “Planned” leftovers are the key. When we make brown rice pilaf, we make enough for three meals…very little extra work and plenty of ways to use the leftovers.
The roasted tomato sauce was last year’s garden bounty that ended up in the freezer. It’s frozen in different sized containers to make it convenient to use without thawing too much at a time.
The yellow squash is coming from the garden by the armload. It’s always best picked young and eaten the day it is picked. When you are filling the squash with ingredients that are already cooked, the squash should be steamed before being filled otherwise the squash will not be cooked when the filling is starting to brown and dry out.
If you want to make a meal of this squash, add cheese to the top, stir in some leftover cooked meat. Be creative! You know what your family will eat.
Stuffed Squash Ingredients
- 4 yellow crookneck squash, washed with the ends trimmed
- 2 cups leftover brown rice pilaf
- 1/2 cup roasted tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup buttered bread crumbs
Stuffed Squash Steps
- Steam the squash until just tender.
- Remove the squash to a plate to cool enough to handle.
- Slice the squash in half long ways.
- Use a sharp-edged spoon to scoop out the pulp, leaving at least 1/4 inch shell in the bulb section of the squash.
- Chop the pulp and place it in a medium mixing bowl with the rice pilaf, tomato sauce and basil. Taste for salt and pepper. Make any necessary adjustments.
- Mix well and divide between the 8 squash halves.
- Sprinkle the buttered bread crumbs over the squash filling.
- Arrange the filled squash in a baking dish large enough to accommodate the load in one layer.
- Pour 1/2 cup of water into the bottom of the baking dish to prevent burning the squash bottoms and to provide some moisture in the warming process.
- Place the filled baking dish into a 400 degree oven. Heat until the breadcrumbs brown, about 20 minutes. If you are topping the squash with cheese, add the cheese at about 15 minutes. Pull the squash from the oven when the cheese is melted and bubbling.
These little gems reheat surprising well. The yellow crooknecks are sturdy and hold their shape. To reheat on the stove top, place some water in a heavy skillet, not enough to drown the squash, just enough to steam them. Turn up the heat and when the water begins to boil, add the squash halves. Turn down the heat. Add a lid. Heat for about 10 minutes.