Grilled Turkey Stuffed Squash & Spiced Red Rice Side

by ....RaeDi

 

What is for dinner? We wanted something a little different, hoping we would not need to go to the market.  It has been a long morning for T salmon fishing and then he surprised me by picking the rest of the very ripe blackberries.  He said he got to thinking about the Blackberry Syrup I said I would make.

I knew he did not feel up to the run into town for a market trip and neither did I.  Living at the tip of a peninsula has this one drawback.  I made a quick look through the refrig and pantry and came up with Squash stuffed with Turkey and Smoked Apple Gruyère Cheese Stuffing and we would do them on the grill.   I also had what I needed on hand to make the Spicy Red Brown Rice dish that he loves so much!

We are very easy to please; whatever we serve it is agreed it has to be cooked with quality ‘cookmanship.’   Meaning makes it to your best ability, do not just throw it together and then serve no matter what it tastes like.  We both love good quality tasting food.  That does not mean that even with a lot of work we have never had a meal come out bad, we both have had our fair share of disasters in the kitchen.  I can say very hard-earned disasters.

It is fun for us to get together and make a meal and this was one of them, between the two of us, we had one person.  He is good at getting the ingredients together and prepping everything.  I like to then take the prepped ingredients and make the completed dishes.  We always seem to be a pair no matter who is doing what.   Once everything was in the oven and on the grill, it is time to just sit back, relax and smell the fragrance of dinner as it baked and grilled.

This was a good time for a cup of warm tea and some good conversation.  We are in the middle of planning a couple of short trips and working on our long trip for this winter going south to the desert, we have been talking about maybe while down in the southwest just heading east to Georgia and her coastline.  Spending a couple of wonderful weeks at Tybee Island, Georgia to be exact something we would both love.   We would love to do a month-long trip up and down the east coast, probably next year’s late fall early spring run.  T has been to China, Australia, Japan and many other places, everywhere but to this countries east coast.  I lived up and down the east coast for about a dozen years and would dearly love to return and revisit from Maine (would love to be there for fall colors, they are so beautiful) to Florida with a nice long leisurely trip.   It is always so much fun… an adventure in itself deciding the where’s, when, and how’s of making trip plans and too being able to dream about what hopefully could and would be.

Stuffed Squash with Turkey and Smoked Apple Gruyère Cheese

          Ingredients:

  • 1 and ¼ cup of turkey mix (recipe for turkey meatballs)
  • ¾ cup (you can add more or less) Shredded Smoked Apple Gruyère Cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 2 yellow squash and 2 zucchini squash
  • Full ½ cup of chopping squash/zucchini leftovers
  • Two pieces of pepper bacon (cook to semi-done and chopped,) I like to use pancetta… we had none – we wanted no market trip! 

For me this was an easy decision, I already had about a ½ pound of pre-made turkey mix I use for my turkey meatballs in the freezer.  This has the seasoning, breadcrumbs and such already added so all I needed to do was mix in the cheese, egg and what was left of the squash/zucchini from prepping and the chopped bacon.   I went ahead, prepared, and put in refrigerator until needed.

T topped and sliced each zucchini in half-length wise and scooped out the center from end to end, left about ½ -3∕4inch of meat with skins, leaving the ends a little higher than scooped out center (since stuffing want a little side there too.)  With the yellow squash, he topped off the curved necks right above where the fullest of the body (bottom) of the yellow squash is.  He took a little off the bottom so it would sit nicely.  He then scooped out the inside of the squash leaving around ¼-½ inch of the squash meat on the insides of the squash.  Once through with that he took the leftovers, neck and insides of all squash and chopped them up for the stuffing.

I stuffed all the squash with turkey meat mix (topped them up and rounded smooth) and put on baking sheet with about ½ cup of water.  Then we tented the whole thing with tin foil.  Placed in the heated 400˚grill and grilled for about 15-20 minutes, turned off heat to grill and removed the tin foil and cooked an additional 5 minutes with grill lid down.

Spicy Red Brown Rice

          Ingredients:

  • One cup of Brown rice
  • 1 14.5 oz  can of Diced Fire Roasted Tomatoes (this would be good with grilled tomatoes you make, but was using what I had in the house, not enough tomatoes to grill for amount needed)
  • 2 tablespoon of tomato paste
  • two cups of Chicken Broth
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 2 cloves of diced garlic, pressed with side of knife to release juices some
  • 1 small jalapeno pepper, diced
  • About ¼ cup of Roasted Bell Peppers (in oil) cut into thin julienne strips
  • Oregano, Basil, Red Pepper Flakes ~ add to your taste
  • Sea Salt
  • Fresh Ground Black Pepper
  • 3 slices of Pepper Bacon ( I like to use pancetta)

I fry the bacon, not quite done, remove from pan and take all but about 1 tablespoon of the fat out ( used two pieced in stuffed squash and put one of these in the rice mixture.)  Put chopped onion in and fry/stir for a few minutes.  Add the dry rice.  Stir-fry it until you have a nutty fragrance.  Add garlic and about ½ cup of the chicken broth.  Add the jalapeno, Roasted Bell Peppers strips.  Now add the Diced Fire Roasted Tomatoes and chopped bacon.  When this has cooked for a few minutes and has started to boil some and reduce just a little, add the rest of the chicken broth and bring to full boil, put on lid and bring down temperature to simmer.  Cook rice mix until done, about 40 minutes.

At this point, I threw in some little meatballs I made from the leftover Turkey and Smoked Apple Gruyère Cheese Stuffing (I used to stuff the squash.)  We can eat them tomorrow night with the leftover Spicy Red Brown Rice.

This dinner was a nice change.  We had a nice fresh salad with the blackberry vinegar we just made.  The squash stuffing was delicious; it was similar to a soufflé, light and airy, you can see in the pictures how much it raised above the squash top.   We both noticed this right off.   From just seeing what we had in the house, this meal was enjoyable and comforting too.  We both actually ate more than what we needed and then wished we had not.  Then agreed it was worth it.  The leftovers with the added meatballs will be a welcome for tomorrow’s evening meal.  We cannot wait; we know what we will be getting….

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