This is a fabulous recipe for stuffed and baked acorn squash that pairs the squash with a savory rice, onion, cranberry and nut filling. It makes a perfect vegetarian main course recipe or side dish with anything.
Bring water and rice to boil in large heavy saucepan. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the rice and transfer it to a large bowl.
Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Meanwhile, place the squash, cut side down, on a greased baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until tender, about 40 minutes. Cool. Using spoon, scoop out pulp from the squash, leaving 1/4 inch around the shell. Place the shells to the side. Transfer the pulp to a medium bowl and chop it up into small pieces.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350ºF.
Melt the butter in large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until very tender, about 15 minutes. Add the sage and stir for 2 minutes. Add the rice, squash cubes and lemon juice. Stir together to mix. Mix in cranberries, hazelnuts and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.
Divide the rice mixture evenly into the squash shells. Place them in a roasting pan and bake until the filling is heated through, about 25 minutes.