As I type this post, I’m listening to Christmas music! I know, I know, It’s exams Julie, you should be studying! But you see, I am a firm believer in taking breaks and relaxing a little during exam time. I’m not one of those people who can sit down for six (or more!) hours straight and study. I max out at two hours, and then my brain starts to get all fuzzy and I can’t absorb anything. This exam period I have two types of study breaks: Running ones and blog related ones. I obviously adore my running breaks, for the getting to see my friends part just as much as the actual run itself! I also love my blogging breaks, as they result in something like this:
Cranberry, Pear, Lentil and Millet Stuffed Squash!
Or as I like to call it – Squash stuffed with Christmas! Seriously, I have fallen in love with cranberries! They are tangy, ever-so-slightly sweet and bursting with flavour. To me, they are one of those flavours that sort of embody Christmas. Like eggnog, peppermint and clementines, they have a way of getting me in the spirit!
Delicious! Unfortunately, I have procrastinated long enough – back to studying!
Cranberry, Pear, Lentil and Millet Stuffed Squash
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 30 min
1 acorn or peppercorn squash
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp maple syrup
1/2 c. red lentils
1/2 c. millet
3 c. water
3 c. kale
1/2 c. cranberries
1/4 c. onion
1 clove garlic
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp maple syrup
1/3 c. walnuts
Preheat your oven to 375F. Cut your squash in half, drizzle with olive oil and maple syrup and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the squash cut-side down on a tray lined with aluminum foil and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the squash is soft.
Place the red lentils, millet, and water in a pot and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 25 minutes, or until the lentil an millet is cooked and most of the water is soaked up.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, heat a drop of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the diced onion, pear, and cranberries and cook until the onion is translucent and the cranberries begin to split. Add the garlic and kale and saute for another few minutes until the kale begins to wilt. Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, and dash of salt and cook for another couple minutes.
When the lentils and millet are finished cooking, add them to the pan with the cranberries, onions and kale and stir to combine. Stir in the apple cider vinegar and maple syrup, and cook, stirring occasionally, until everything is heated through and and the liquid is evaporated.
Place the walnuts on an oven-safe plate and place in the oven for the last 10 minutes of cook-time with the squash, watching carefully so they don’t burn.
When the squash are done, remove them from the oven and flip over. (be careful- they’ll be hot!) Fill each half with as much filling as you can fit. (you’ll have leftover filling, but don’t worry- it makes for great leftovers on top of salad!)
Sprinkle with toasted walnuts and an extra drizzle of maple syrup, if desired.
What do you do when you take study/work “breaks”? What kinds of foods get you into the Christmas spirit?