Happy Tuesday beautiful people! We all survived Thanksgiving, hooray! Did everyone have a lovely holiday? I was unsure of how this Thanksgiving was going to go but it ended up being one of the most relaxed ones yet. Granted the days leading up to the big day were a bit stressful but all in all, it was a great holiday. First, I woke up and moaned about working out for a solid half hour until Z finally convinced me to just go and do it. I did some nice running intervals right outside my house. I’ve been following Aerobic Capacity for a few weeks now and love the program! After that we got ready and made our way to my moms. She made some turkey roasts, an apple dump cake, stuffing and corn. I provided the mashed potatoes, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie. For the pie, I cheated a little and used a gluten free gingersnap crust from Whole Foods while the mashed taters and green bean casserole I got from Fed and Fit. Everything was delicious and my family had some paleo/gluten free dishes without even knowing it! J
After my mom we headed over to Z’s cousins house. We planned on doing dessert here and boy, did we. There was a huge spread of pecan pie, pumpkin cheesecake, chocolate pecan coconut cookies, peanut butter cookies, chocolate chip cookies, maple cookies and cream cheese Oreo brownies. Needless to say, nothing was paleo or gluten free but everything we tried was delicious. Around the holidays, especially at parties where I don’t know people well or I’m meeting them for the first time, I give myself a bit more leniency. 1) I don’t want to be rude and 2) I generally tolerate this stuff okay. I generally make good choices yearlong so I don’t like to kill myself over what I’m eating at the few holiday parties I attend. Remember to always do what works for you!
The rest of my weekend was spent hanging out friends here and there but also a lot of hanging out of my couch watching Netflix. Z was hunting most of the weekend (like every weekend now that hunting season is in full swing) so I had a lot of time to catch up on “me” time. I furiously watched Gilmore Girls (plz comment below if you have to!!), a multitude of Chopped episodes as well as a few movies, including The Big Short and Arrival. While I enjoy these weekends to myself, I do hate when Z is gone all weekend. Luckily, hunting season usually means having tons of venison meat to make awesome recipes for you guys! Carrying venison after a hunt is quite a big task which is why you should really consider investing in a quality hunting bag. I personally love venison and have never had an issue with anything Z has brought home. If you don’t have access to venison or simply don’t like it, this stuffed acorn squash recipe can easily be made with ground beef or ground bison instead. However you decide to customize this dish, it’s warm flavors are sure to hit the spot!
- 1 large acorn squash (or 2 small)
- 1# ground venison (we get ours with pork mixed in)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 medium green apple, diced
- 2 small sweet onion, diced
- 1 tsp ginger
- 2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp all spice
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1/2 cup pomegranates for garnish
- Parsley Lemon sauce;
- 3 tbsp mayo
- 2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
- 1 tbsp lemon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Pre-heat oven to 375F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut the acorn squash is half and scoop out seeds. Place the squash face down on the baking sheet and bake for 35-45 minutes, until tender.
- After squash is done baking, turn oven down to 350F.
- Heat a large skillet over medium/high heat and add coconut oil.
- Next, add the venison to the pan, breaking apart with a spoon. Add in the nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, rosemary and cook until browned.
- Once venison is cooked, transfer to large bowl and turn heat down to medium on pan.
- Add the onion to the pan and cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes.
- Next, add in the pear and cook until softened. Add this mixture to the venison.
- Once mixed through, stuff acorn squash with mixture. You may need to scoop out extra acorn squash if you want more stuffing inside.
- Place baking sheet back in oven and bake for 10-15 minutes until warmed through.
- After squash is done cooking, plate and top with pomegranates and sauce!
- This yields leftover stuffing mixture. I had this with eggs the next day and it was perfect! Try it over a sweet potato or our twice baked acorn squash!