Healthy Recipes – How to Prepare Quick Vegan Holiday Meal

Healthy Recipes – How to Prepare Quick Vegan Holiday Meal- as part of the expert series by GeoBeats.

I am Rebecca Corby with Green Island Catering. I am going to show you how to make an easy vegan main dish for the holidays. This is half of an acorn squash that I have made a vegan sausage stuffing for. And there is lots of different types of stuffing you could stuff a squash with. This particular stuffing I used a combination of some sourdough breadcrumbs, also with some whole grain breadcrumbs. And I used some diced onions and diced celery that I sauteed first. Then I placed all those ingredients in a bowl. I also added some sauteed vegan sausage. Now this sausage I found at the regular grocery store, and the way I know that it is vegan is it has the little certified vegan symbol on it. It is made of a mixture of vegetable protein from soy beans and wheat, and this is a wonderful product to use, very easy to substitute for your stuffing. It just browns in the pan just like regular sausage, so I have also added some of that to the stuffing.

Then to season it you can use things like black pepper, some garlic, some Italian seasoning, or you could also use some poultry seasoning which is very similar to an Italian blend, it just has some black pepper and nutmeg added as well. You are also going to want to add some broth and for vegan cooking you are going to use vegetable broth instead of your chicken or beef broth, so another very simple substitution to make an easy vegan meal. Another great thing about vegan cooking is that you can taste the product as you go along. You do not have to worry about raw meat, because this is not actually real meat, or raw eggs, so you can feel free to season your stuffing and taste as it you go and adjust based on your own preferences.

So for this particular stuffing I have decided to use an acorn squash, and it is called an acorn squash because as you can see it is shaped like an acorn. Now you are going to need to cut this in half with a nice sturdy sharp knife, so be careful, squashes are very hard so just take your time and be patient when you cut it. And before I cut it I would like to cut both of the ends off so that it has a nice base so it does not roll over. So first I am just going to go ahead and cut a little bit off of this end. So now that side will sit flat, and I am also going to cut off a little of this end. So now both sides are going to lay nice and flat. And now you are just going to cut it across the middle. This is the part where it gets a little tricky. I like to just put even pressure on both sides of my knife and just rock it back and forth until it goes through. Some people like to use a rubber mallet or a hammer, you can try that as well.

So now you have cut your squash in half. You can see it has a nice pretty shape so it looks really nice for the presentation. And we are just going to scoop out the inside so it is ready for stuffing. So all you need is just a regular spoon. Just make sure you get the seeds out. Right, now that you have scraped out the inside of the squash, you are going to want to pre-bake it, so all you do is take the two pieces, place them this side down onto your baking sheet and bake it at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes. That is going to cook the squash most of the way through but not all the way, because then you want to stuff it with your stuffing and put it back in the oven to brown the stuffing. After you have cooked your squash in the oven with your stuffing so that it is nice and browned on top, you have a wonderful little vessel for your vegan, cholesterol-free stuffing.

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