Cheesy Chorizo and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash

I think I may have a problem. I'm a squash hoarder. Or I was.

Since fall began, I had been gathering winter squash almost obsessively, arranging it in baskets and bowls on every available surface in and around my house as it arrived in my weekly Washington's Green Grocer box and feeling as though it was somehow too pretty to cook. I'd line up butternut, acorn, spaghetti, and declicata on my window sill and find myself straightening them in a tight little row after the kids were in bed and I sipped my nightly beer or wine. My husband would look on with disdain, probably wondering where my preoccupation with Curcubita stemmed.

Even to me this behavior seemed irrational. I became worried that one day I'd wake up spooning a pie pumpkin. Finally, this weekend, I came to the conclusion that it's go-time. I can't just keep this fall bounty sitting pretty any longer. I just so happened to stumble upon a great stuffed acorn squash recipe while thumbing through Real Simple so I decided to modify it to end this creepy collection of mine once and for all. I figure, I can cook the squash and the whole family can enjoy them. Save the inedible gourds for hoarding, right?! If I begin lacquering my Gala apples and stuffing them into suitcases under my bed, I'll be sure to let you know.

So here's my take on stuffing an acorn squash. The best thing is you can literally do everything in advance and then, right before you want to serve this, stuff the squash with the pre-made mix and pop into the oven. I served with sauteed rainbow chard (done in my skillet with an onion, a few minced cloves of garlic, balsamic and some EVOO) and it was a perfect fall meal.

Cheesy Chorizo and Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash

1 pound chorizo (Sausage Craft nailed it...this sausage rocks)
2 large acorn squash, halved and deseeded
2 cups cooked quinoa (use chicken stock for this!)
2 cups of your favorite grated cheese (I used the Organic Valley sharp cheddar from WGG and shredded it myself. Perfect here)
coconut oil -- for coating the squash while roasting

Saute your chorizo until well browned. When cool, crumble into the quinoa and then mix in the cheddar cheese. You can set this stuffing container aside or stick in the fridge until you are ready to use.

You can also roast your squash ahead of time. Coat the meaty side of the squash with coconut oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven on 400 degrees until fork tender -- probably about 35 - 40 minutes. Then, you can stick these in the fridge until you're ready to use or stuff immediately.

When ready, stuff the squash with the stuffing and roast in the oven at 375 for an additional 20 minutes. Serve immediately.