Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Rocket & Roses Smokey Stuffed Harlequin Pumpkins (vegan & gluten-free)

Rocket & Roses Kitchen Play List:

Jamie Cullum ~ 7 Days To Change Your Life
Shakira ~ Sombra De Ti
Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture
Skin ~ House Of Love
The Eagles ~ I Can't Tell You Why
Joan Jett ~ Cherry Bomb
Eurythmics ~ Here Comes The Rain Again
Sandi Thom ~ Show No Concern
Evanescence ~ Erase This
INXS ~ The Gift
Billy Ocean ~ Caribbean Queen
Temple Of The Dog ~ Reach Down
Foreigner ~ Blue Morning, Blue Day
The Vaccines ~ We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together

I love autumn. There isn't a single thing about this season that I don't like. I love chill in the air whilst being blinded by the sunshine. I love the smell of it. I love watching the leaves on the trees turn all the vibrant colours that this season of renewal brings. That's a lot of love for one opening paragraph, eh? Ah well. Yesterday afternoon a took a walk with my good pal Ann and the four legged fella Archie. We greatly enjoyed walking through the carpet of leaves and the crunch underfoot felt really good. Ahem..and yes there was some kicking up of leaves too. Can't take the child out of the Autumn and all that...ahem...anyway to today's recipe...

One of the other things I love about Autumn is the foods. I love the change from refreshing summer fare to the warming Autumn foods. Don't misunderstand I still eat salad and raw veggies everyday even in the depths of Winter. But I really enjoy seeing the seasonal veggies when they make it to the markets. One of my favourites is the pumpkin. I recently realised my tastes have changed slightly and I no longer enjoy the large orange variety. I will eat them blitzed into a soup but as a pumpkin to be thank you. I much prefer the smaller Harlequin, Delicata or miniture pumpkins. To be honest we don't have that many varieties to choose from here in England unless you grow your own. I live for the day that I walk into the markets and find Spaghetti Squash sat there waiting for me. You gotta have dreams, right? lol. There isn't a method of cooking them that I don't enjoy. Roasted, steamed, blitzed in a soup, not blitzed in a soup, creamed into a risotto, in a curry...endless ways to enjoy them. But my favourite by far is stuffed with a great tasting filling. For speed these days I confess I bake off my pumpkin separately and cook my stuffing in a skillet and then serve them up from there. I do believe the flavour is just as great without the combined roasting time in the oven of stuffing into pumpkin. But that choice is entirely yours. 

This recipe came about after a quick visit to supermarket after an afternoon spent at the had been a grey and drizzly day so we were cold to the bone when we got to the store. I had no idea what I was going to cook that day...and then we saw a display of beautifully coloured pumpkins. And two were stashed in our basket and dinner was decided. When we got home..I simply selected things from my fridge and stocks and made it up as I went along. We sat down to eat our meal and both of us were instantly Mmmmmming...without shame. The pumpkins were succulent, sweet and tender and the stuffing was smokey/savoury enough to lift the sweetness. It was a real pain to eat this I currently have two more little pumpkins sat waiting in my stocks and this fact makes me very happy. 

Rocket & Roses Smokey Stuffed Harlequin Pumpkins

Rocket & Roses Smokey Stuffed Harlequin Pumpkins
(Original recipe from the Rocket & Roses Vegan Kitchen)    

2 Harlequin pumpkins or other small pumpkins
1 tbsp olive oil 
1 large onion, chopped
5 smoked garlic cloves, micro-grated 
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
2 Savoury cabbage leaves, de-stalked and finely chopped
1 tin Borlotti beans, rinsed and drained
90g cooked brown rice 
1 1/2 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste
8 fl oz veggie stock
heaped 1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 tbsp vegan strong vegan cream cheese 
freshly ground Himalayan salt to taste
freshly ground cracked black pepper - generous amount

Pre-heat the oven to 180'C/350'F/GM 4. Remove the tops of the pumpkins and then remove all seeds and membranes. Pour a little oil into your hands and cover yours fingers with it and then rub it into the flesh of the pumpkins. You can either roast them whole or halve them at this point. Place onto a baking sheet and place in the heated oven and bake until flesh is tender and a knife slips easily into the skin. Remove from the oven and cover with foil to keep warm until ready to serve. 

In a skillet, heat the remaining oil and saute the onion, peppers and savoy leaves until the onions are soft. Add in the garlic and stir well and cook until the garlic becomes fragrant. Add in the remaining ingredients except the vegan cream cheese. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and then stir in the vegan cream cheese. Spoon into hot pumpkin shells and then serve...


Thanks for stopping by and I hope that your week has started with laughter and happiness..


NB: This is my creation. I have no problem with you using it or sharing it. I simply ask that you give credit where its due as I always try to. Many thanks...Namaste. ~R~