Sausage and squash make fine side dish


October 01, 2003|By Ellen Hawks | Ellen Hawks,SUN STAFF

Connie Page of Holland, Mich., requested a recipe for acorn squash stuffed with sausage. She wrote: "I found the recipe on the back of a local grocery store's calendar in the mid-1990s. The sausage was seasoned with sage and I'm not sure what else. It was soooooo yummy and now I've lost it."

Karl Wagner of Sharon, Wis., responded with a recipe from Bon Appetit magazine from 1996. The magazine said: "The German settlers in Philadelphia were known for their sausage-making talents.

"In this side dish, sausage teams up with molasses and squash, two classic Colonial ingredients. Be sure to select squash that are no bigger than 4 inches in diameter so that they will fit in a single layer in the baking dish."

Sausage-Stuffed Acorn Squash With Molasses Glaze

Serves 8

4 small acorn squash

1 tablespoon butter

1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

2 large green onions, thinly sliced

1 pound bulk breakfast sausage

1 cup fresh white bread crumbs

1/2 cup canned beef broth

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup mild-flavored (light) molasses

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut two 3/4 -inch-thick slices from center of each acorn squash for a total of 8 slices (reserve ends of squash for another use). Scoop out seeds and fibers from center slices and discard.

Arrange squash rings in a single layer in a 15-inch-by- 10-inch-by-2-inch baking dish. Melt butter in a heavy medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add bell pepper and green onions. Saute until tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to large bowl; cool.

Mix in sausage, bread crumbs, broth, pepper and salt. Mound sausage mixture in center of squash rings, using about 1/3 cup for each. (This can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Brush sausage and squash with half of molasses. Bake 15 minutes. Brush with remaining molasses and bake until squash are tender and sausage is cooked through, about 25 minutes.

Tester Laura Reiley's comments: "This recipe would make a lovely holiday side dish. The molasses gives the finished squash a dark, lustrous glaze. Since molasses has such a distinctive flavor, I might reduce the amount of molasses to about 1/2 cup [and, if you like your squash sweet, you might add a few tablespoons of brown sugar to the molasses glaze].

"The recipe didn't specifically call for sausage flavored with sage, but the recipe request mentioned sage. Many sausages are flavored with the herb, or you could add 1/2 teaspoon sage to the stuffing mixture. I would use larger, fresh bread crumbs, as opposed to finely ground, packaged bread crumbs. The resulting filling is fluffier and less dense."

Recipe requests

Louise K. Smith of Havre de Grace wants a recipe that she believes is called Sundae Tart and was on a Bisquick box. "Although it directed that the dough be spread in a muffin pan, I spread it on an upside-down muffin pan, and when they were cooked I slipped them off very carefully and let them cool, then put them on a cookie sheet. The filling was pudding with a fruit and jelly glaze. I'd be so grateful if a reader could complete this recipe for me."

Charlotte J. Dabney of Ford, Va., wrote a brief note. "I have been looking for a recipe for Oriental muffins like the ones that Dutch Maid in Johnstown, Pa., made at one time."

If you are looking for a recipe or can answer a request for a hard-to-find recipe, write to Ellen Hawks, Recipe Finder, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278. If you send more than one recipe, please put each on a separate sheet of paper with your name, address and daytime phone number. Important: Names must accompany recipes for them to be published. Please list the ingredients in order of use, and note the number of servings each recipe makes. Please type or print contributions. Letters may be edited for clarity.

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