quinoa stuffed acorn squash and eggplant gratin with herbs & crème fraîche

the other night, brandon and i had our first dinner together at home as roommates. brandon is a vegetarian, so i created a new pinterest board filled with various vegetarian recipes to try, which included the quinoa stuffed acorn squash and eggplant gratin with herbs & crème fraîche we made that night.

quinoa stuffed acorn squash

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original recipe found here.

ingredients: quinoa, acorn squash, dried cranberries, fresh chopped basil, chopped onions, minced garlic, chickpeas, red chilli flakes, olive oil, sea-salt, and pepper.

pre-heat oven to 400°. cut saw the squash in half. scoop out the seeds and glaze the inside of the squash-halves with olive oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake in the oven for around an hour. while the squash is baking, cook the quinoa; add the onions, garlic, chickpeas, and red chilli flakes to the mix once the quinoa is cooked; add the cranberries and basil to it as well. place the mixture back into the squash halves and bake for a bit until it’s done (around 15 – 20 minutes in the oven).

i also made some crispy chickpeas for us to snack on, since i only used around half a can in the mixture for the squash.

at the exact same time, we also made the other dish of the evening:

eggplant gratin with herbs & crème fraîche

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original recipe found here.

ingredients: eggplant, whipping cream, parmesan cheese, chives, sea-salt, pepper, parsley, thyme, garlic salt, and canola oil.

pre-heat oven to 400°. slice eggplant and fry in a pan with canola oil, salt, and pepper until the eggplant is golden on both sides; set aside. place whipping cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and whisk – stir in herbs and parmesan cheese. place eggplant slices in a baking dish, cover each layer with tomato sauce and a sprinkle of garlic salt, and then cover the entire dish with the creme mix and lots of parmesan cheese. bake for around half an hour or until completely done.

making both dishes simultaneously put my multitasking skills to the test, and i was half-worried that one of the dishes might accidentally turn out like rachel’s trifle pie that tasted like feet (friends reference), but the timing worked out perfectly and the dishes were delicious. our dinner went perfectly with the celebratory bottle of white wine i picked up to congratulate brandon for passing his real estate exam.

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