Wild Rice with Kabocha Squash & Sage Butter - by Julie Morris

Wild Rice with Kabocha Squash & Sage Butter - by Julie Morris


I promised I had a special recipe to share on the way, and at last, the hungry wait is over!

Well, almost over … first, I can’t help but briefly gush about what a true pleasure it’s been reading all the comments on the Thrive Foods Giveaway so far. What does positive environmental change look like? Apparently, it looks like us: from the person who is looking to incorporate a few more meatless meals each week, to the person who avoids using disposable plasic, to the person who chooses a car-less daily work commute, to the person who epitimizes local food by having a vegetable garden. One of these actions is awesome enough, and when you read all of these actions collectively, it’s downright inspiring. Have you entered the giveaway yet? There’s still time to enter here now.

As I mentioned in the last post, this week’s special recipe is one that I developed for Brendan Braziers’ fascinating new book, Thrive Foods. One look at the photo above, and I think you’ll agree, this entree is begging to be the subject of your next recipe adventure. With a new crop of winter squash just now coming into season, this dish features my favorite squash of all: Kabocha (aka The Japanese Pumpkin). Kabocha is naturally so immensly flavorful, that it asks for very little from us in the seasoning department, offering decadant, impressive tasting results just on its own. But. Mix kabocha in with some comforting wild rice, toss in a sage-infused “butter” (made from coconut oil and simple, fresh flavors), and you’ve got the makings of a masterpiece. In fact, Brendan names this recipe as one of his top 5 favorite dishes ever. (I’ll let you in on a secret: when he first taste-tested it, I went to go get a little more sage from the garden, and when I came back the recipe was GONE. It’s one of those dishes.)

To make this a truly well-rounded meal, I like to serve this with a generous salad, made with mixed baby greens, shredded carrots, chopped walnuts and a simple vinaigrette.

And that’s how we do Thrive Foods.

Wild Rice with Kabocha Squash & Sage Butter
Serves 4

To save time, make the rice and butter while the squash is cooking. Yams may also be used in place of the kabocha.

½ cup wild rice
½ cup brown rice
2 cups water
1 pound kabocha squash (about ½ medium squash)
3 Tbsp melted coconut oil plus 1 Tbsp (divided)
½ Tbsp chopped fresh sage, packed
1 Tbsp minced shallots
½  tsp sea salt

To make the squash: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Cut the squash in half, then scoop out and discard the seeds. Use 1 Tbsp coconut oil to lightly brush the cut areas of the squash, and place cut side down on a baking sheet. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until soft when pierced with a fork. When cool enough to handle, cut into large 1-inch chunks (skin may be left on for extra flavor and nutrition or disposed of). Keep warm.

To make the rice: In a medium pot over high heat, combine both varieties of rice with the water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer, and cook until rice is tender and cooked through (about 25-30 minutes; time varies slightly upon exact type of rice used). Keep warm.

To make the sage butter: In a food processor, blend 3 Tbsp coconut oil, sage, shallots and sea salt until smooth.

To serve: In a large pan, heat the sage butter mixture over medium-low heat for one minute. Add the cooked rice and toss to combine, then cook for one minute longer while stirring constantly.  Remove from heat and carefully fold in the squash. Serve warm.

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