The Fort Recipe: Baked Stuffed Pumpkin

Thanksgiving dinner doesn’t have to be predictable. This year, treat guests to a different tablescape, including one of The Fort’s favorite dishes: Baked Stuffed Pumpkin. Inspired by the American Indians, this recipe utilizes pumpkin – a squash and member of the Three Sacred Sisters – as its main ingredient. Mixing the pumpkin with an array of flavors, including buffalo or ground beef, peppers, sunflower seeds, hot sauce and more, makes for an incredibly comforting dish that guests are sure to love!

What you’ll need:

  • 1 (4 to 5 lb.) sugar pumpkin
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • Fine sea salt, to taste
  • Coarsely ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 c. white onion, chopped
  • 1 lb. ground buffalo or lean ground beef
  • 2 c. fresh corn kernels
  • 2 c. fresh green beans
  • 1 c. green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 c. cooked chicken, diced
  • 1 c. sunflower seeds, hulled
  • 4 c. chicken broth
  • 2 fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced
  • Hot pepper sauce, to taste

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Cut the top off of the pumpkin with a large knife, jack-o’-lantern style. With a large spoon, scrape out the seeds and strings. Rub the inside of the pumpkin generously with melted butter and season with salt and pepper. Place the pumpkin in a roasting pan. Bake, with the top off, for 45 minutes. Check after 30 minutes and remove any liquid buildup.

While the pumpkin is roasting, heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed sauté pan. Add the onion, and cook over medium heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the buffalo and sauté until browned. Stir in the corn, green beans, bell pepper, diced chicken, sunflower seeds, chicken broth and peaches. When the liquid comes to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 40 minutes.

Remove the pumpkin from the oven, and place onto a round, serving platter. Ladle the stew into the pumpkin, and top with the lid.

As you serve, be sure to scrape the inside of the pumpkin to add delicious flavor to the stew.

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