The Assado with squash and spinach (Assado de abóbora e espinafres)
Assado means baked; in Brazilian cuisine, the assado family of dishes includes many “Kibe” recipes that were imported from the Middle East: while this dish is technically not a Kibe as it does not use bulgur wheat, it includes spinach and squash: divine and simple. Seen frequently in Brazilian soups, squash is a vegetable that has a soft texture that is ideal for baking; and we must not forget all its nutritive benefits, too.
Also, this recipe is appreciated by parents who are looking for recipes for their children who hate vegetables.
Yield: 4 servings
Recipe for Assado with Squash and Spinach
* 1 Kabocha, buttercup or acorn squash
* 2 red onions, cut in 8: quartered, then each quarter halved
* 2 garlic cloves
* 3 tablespoons olive oil
* 1 lb. (500 g) spinach leaves
* 4 tablespoons whole breadcrumbs
* 2 cup (500 ml) milk
* 3 tablespoons (30 g) flour
* 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
* 2 bay leaves
* black pepper
1) First we start by making the sauce in a skillet. Add the chopped yellow onion, pour in the milk, the flour and bay leaf. Stir until the sauce has thickened. At the end take out the bay leaves.
2) Preheat the oven to 400 ˚F (200 °C). Bake on a baking tray the squash, previously diced into cubes, and quartered red onions, well seasoned with salt and black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.
3) Once the squash is cooked, saute the spinach in olive oil and garlic for 3 minutes.
4) Grease an oven going pan, arrange layers of onion slices, squash cubes and then the spinach, and repeat. Cover everything with the sauce and sprinkle the top with breadcrumbs.
5) Bake for 15 minutes, or until the top has turned into a nice crust.