Do not be fooled by this title. Seriously, the title was in the hopes of capturing wee little ones taste buds, and fooling them at the same time. If I had asked my kids when they were little: "would you like some golden cherry rice stir fry"? They would have been all over it...not knowing there was squash in this dish at all. Actually, as a parent, I was pretty lucky, my kids loved all food, they were not in the least bit fussy. However, I know some parents struggle, so this is a great dish that hides all the wonderful yummy nutrients.
Each year, I try to come up with new Squash dishes, being the squash freak that I am, but honestly, this one is a winner - so dang good and healthy too! We had this wonderful side dish with seared pork chops - a match made in heaven. But, truly, this dish stands on it's own. Delicious, hearty, and flavorful.
I had 1/2 of a large Butternut squash in the fridge, as well as a big batch of steamed rice.....what to do? I decided to wing it - so glad I did, in fact, we might have this dish again tomorrow. Aside from the sweet nutty flavor of butternut squash, and the sweet/tart dried cherries - there was a definite added dimension to this dish that was surprising. I opted to use Dry rubbed Sage and Thyme with this dish...however, Curry seasonings would also be heavenly.
1 cup of mashed, roasted Butternut Squash
salt and pepper
3 Tblsp. Grape Seed Oil
25 dried Sweet/Tart dried Cherries, sliced in half
2 finely sliced green onions
2 minced shallots
6 diced crimini mushrooms
4 minced garlic cloves
1 1/2 tsp. dry rubbed Sage
1/2 tsp. dry Thyme
3/4 cup Chicken Stock
1 cup cooked Basmati Rice
1/2 cup chicken stock
Slice the butternut squash in half, skin on, and drizzle with Olive oil to coat. Roast in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for about 1 hour, or until tender. Remove to a platter and set aside. Once cooled, mash with a fork to equal 1 cup.
Here is the minced cherries and veggies for this dish (minus the squash):
Heat up a non stick pan with the grape seed oil on low medium heat. Add in the mushrooms, sauteing until golden. Then add in the shallots, sauteing for about 3 more minutes. Add in the garlic, green onions, cherries, and seasonings, sauteing another 2-3 minutes.
Then add in the mashed squash, and 3/4 cup of chicken stock, stirring to incorporate. Check for seasonings, and bring to temperature - another 2 minutes.
Add 1 cup of cooked rice, with another 1/2 cup of Chicken stock, again check for seasonings.
Bring to a simmer, continue to stir until thickened, about a minute or two. Serve hot, with any main dish or vegetarian dish.