Herbed Lentil, Rice and Chanterelle Roasted Sugar Pumpkin


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It is that time of the year when the Northwest rains bring forth fresh chanterelle mushrooms. At the same time, sugar pumpkins are ready to harvest. This recipe brings together both with the addition of lentils and rice for a soul satisfying autumn entrée or side dish.

ONWARD:

Whether you choose to use wild chanterelle mushrooms or domestic mushrooms this main dish is loaded with the umami savory flavor. To increase that flavor, mushroom broth and the optional use of Sabatino Tartufi truffle zest heightens the satisfying flavors of lentils and brown rice. Add to that the sweetness of dried cranberries and nutty toasted walnuts to have a dish worthy of a Thanksgiving pièce de résistance. But why wait for Thanksgiving?

6 to 8 servings

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INGREDIENTS:

1 (4 to 5 pound) sugar pumpkin or 2 (2 pounds) sugar pumpkins

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

½ cup onion, peeled, small diced

1 ⅓ cup chanterelle mushrooms, washed or brushed, diced or torn (about 4 ounces)

1 teaspoon garlic, minced

¾ cup brown lentils, rinsed

½ cup brown basmati rice, rinsed

⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg

½ teaspoon dried marjoram

½ teaspoon dried sage

½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves

½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1 teaspoon sea salt

⅛ teaspoon Sabatino Tartufi truffle zest (optional, but good!)

¼ cup apple cider

2 ¾ cups mushroom broth

½ cup dried cranberries

½ cup walnuts, toasted in a pan on the stovetop

1 ½ cup Gruyere or Swiss cheese, grated (about 4 ounces)

FINISH

1.     Preheat oven to 400°F. Thoroughly wash the pumpkin(s). Cut the top off the pumpkin(s) and scrape out the seeds. Stand the pumpkin(s) on a baking ring or layer of foil, wrapped in a coil shape, to keep the pumpkin out of direct contact with the water later in a baking pan.

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2.     In a saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the oil, and sauté the onions and mushrooms until it is softened. Add 2 minced garlic cloves, and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Toss the lentils, rice, nutmeg, marjoram, sage, thyme, salt, pepper, and truffle zest (if using), to coat with oil. Add the apple cider and vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until the rice and lentils are tender, and the liquid is absorbed about forty minutes.

3.     Toss the hot rice mixture with the dried cranberries and toasted walnuts.

4.     Sprinkle the inside of the pumpkin(s) with extra salt and pepper. Divide the mixture into 4 equal portions and the cheese into 3 equal portions. Layer the rice mixture with the cheese inside the pumpkin(s). Begin and finish with the rice mixture. Return the pumpkin(s) top(s) to the top.

5.     Bring water to a boil and pour about one-inch deep around the pumpkin(s). The water should not touch the pumpkin(s). Roast in the oven for one-and-a-half to two hours until when tender when pierced with a paring knife.

6.     Remove from the oven, slice in wedges and serve hot.

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