As we move into November, the orange leaves in the vineyards are suddenly dropping, it’s getting darker and windier, and the temperature is getting chilly. Since we’re staying inside more, I wanted to find ways to use the squashes we have collected the past few weeks. Squash does double duty because its beautiful, can sit out on the table for a while, and it doesn’t take up room in the refrigerator. I love reading Nigel Slater’s books, and when I found his Stuffed Squash with Gruyere it sounded like the perfect hearty side dish or easy vegetarian dinner.
We recently went to Gruyères for authentic Swiss fondue. Gruyères is an adorable village on a hill surrounded with green pastures and cows. Since then, I’ve started to keep a bag of fondue cheese mix in the refrigerator. There are at least six or eight fondue mixtures of Gruyere and Vacherin Fribourgeois cheeses available at our local grocery. The one I love most also has the tiniest bit of cornstarch in it, which makes anything you put it in even creamier and thicker. I’ve been finding it a quick way to add delicious cheese to dishes like creamed spinach. Instead of just using Gruyere, I put in a small handful of Philippe Rochat’s fondue mix. If you don’t have access to a fondue mix, I’d recommend just adding a tiny dusting of cornstarch to grated cheese, or you could leave it out all together.
Stuffed Squash with Fondue Cheese and Sauerkraut
- 2 small squash like kuri, seeded and halved
- 2 tbsp butter
- 3-4 sprigs thyme leaves
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, sliced
- small bunch parsley, chopped
- 150 g sauerkraut
- ¼ cup cheese (Emmentaler, Gruyere, Vacherin, Comte - or fondue mix), grated
- sprinkle cornstarch
- 50 ml cream
- Heat the oven to 350F or 180C.
- Place the squash open side up. Add the butter, thyme, salt, and pepper. Bake for about 45 minutes.
- In a pan, sautee the onion on medium heat, stiring frequently in olive oil until golden. Remove from heat and incorporate the sauerkraut, parsley, cheese, cornstarch, and cream.
- Carefully remove the hot squashes from the oven. Use some of the butter in the center of the squash to brush the edges of the squash. Divide the miture between the squashes and then return to the oven. Bake 25 minutes or until the center is bubbly and the edges are goden brown.