You may notice that I rarely mention my current roommate on the blog. Due to our opposite schedules, I never see her, which is a bit sad because despite the randomness of our meeting (go craigslist!), we actually have a lot in common and she’s pretty awesome. She likes to cook and even ran a half marathon (her first!) last month, so you can clearly see what we’ve got going for us. This weekend she asked if I wanted to cook something together on Monday (my day off!), so we did. And kind of went all out.
My roommate dug out an old Martha Stewart Living magazine from last year and found a "Stuffed Pumpkin Stew” that she wanted to try. She invited a bunch of people over (since it serves ten!) and away we went. I hope you like your veggies…
Here’s the deal:
You find a cheese pumpkin. Yes, a cheese pumpkin…not your ordinary carving pumpkin. I called five grocery stores and everyone gave me funny looks when I asked if they had them (okay, I imagined the funny looks since it was on the phone…but I know it was happening on the other end!). My roommate went to a local farm (yet more proof that I live in a small town) to get one. Anyway, you cut the top off, scrap the insides, lather with olive oil, and roast for an hour:
Next up is veggies galore. Step one involves ten brussel sprouts, six ounces green beans, and four ounces sugar snap peas. Boil them for about two minutes, then transfer to an ice bath. (I’m not sure why the boil/ice bath combo is necessary…feel free to inform me!)
Now for all those weird veggies that you look at in the store but have no clue what to do with. Including: 12 white baby potatoes, two leeks (light green and white parts only!), five carrots, two turnips, four parsnips, half of a butternut squash, and half a celery root. I admittedly have never had half of these veggies before!
For those meat eaters of the blog world, here’s some chicken! Ten chicken legs and thighs, with the skin on. Season with salt and pepper, then cook in a skillet with some oil for 3-4 minutes on each side. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 40 minutes. Once the chicken is removed from the skillet, add one cup chicken stock to the skillet, bring to a boil, then place in a bowl.
Just when you thought all the flavors were covered, we’ve got three baking apples and seven ounces vacuum-packed whole peeled chestnuts! Heat some butter in a skillet and brown the apples for about ten minutes…then add the chestnuts!
Once everything is done roasting (it takes awhile…), add the brussel sprouts, green beans, snap peas, and apples along with two tablespoons garlic to the giant veggies mix and toss. Then roast for ten more minutes.
Now for the fun part…take EVERYTHING (chicken, all veggies, 1/2 cup parsley, stock, and two tablespoons reserved pan juices) and combine. Then stuff the pumpkin!! Roast until “heated through,” about fifteen minutes. Note: over half of the veggies didn’t even come close to fitting in the pumpkin, so we stuffed what we could. I have no clue where Martha got a gigantic pumpkin.
When you’re finally done roasting, turn off the oven!! (Since it’s been on for hours…) Slice the pumpkin and serve with the chicken and stew. It will look something like this:
This was a labor-intensive meal, but it was something totally different than anything I’ve had before, and it was quite tasty! Since we had a bit of a dinner party, it was fun to cook with other people and then enjoy the food. I rarely eat with other people (unless you count eating while blogging!), so it was nice to actually sit and enjoy a meal. I definitely recommend this to enjoy an evening with your friends/family. It kind of felt like a mini-Thanksgiving, especially with the addition of dessert:
There you have it…an absolutely amazingly ridiculous meal like I’ve never had before. I think it’s fun to try new recipes and eat new foods, especially when you can share it with others! Give it a try!