Acorn Squash Molcajete – CrossFit Series

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I’m a huge fan of the Molcajete.

I have one other recipe on the site for this Mexican specialty, so if you’re as much a fan as I am, then be sure to check it out.

The technique is really what we’re after as you can fill the squash bowls with any ingredients you choose. And, if squash isn’t your thing, then hook up with one of these and go to town in authentic fashion.

Whatever you do, be sure to smile lots because you’re eating tasty food all while…

“Keeping It Paleo!”

Your Pal,

Paleo Nick

(Rocking it with these dudes in Sierraville last night…)

Acorn Squash Molcajete

Ingredient List:

  • 1 pound wild caught shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 pounds carne asada, diced
  • 8 cups tomatillos, peeled and quartered
  • 4 cups onions, diced
  • 5 acorn squashes, halved and seeded
  • 4 tablespoons Cheechako Tako spice blend
  • 10 cloves garlic, smashed and minced
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped (garnish)
  • 1 avocado, diced (as garnish)
  • 1/2 red onion, diced (as garnish)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil, plus some for drizzling
  • Water, as needed
  • Kosher salt, to taste

Preparation Instructions for the Molcajete:

  1. Place the squashes, flesh-side up, on a foil-lined sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil, season with Cheechako Tako and roast at 375 F for 15-20 minutes or until about half-cooked.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the carne asada and 3 tablespoons Cheechako Tako. Add shrimp, 2 cups of onions and the tomatillo salsa (see below). Mix well.
  3. When the squashes are cooked halfway, remove from the oven and fill each “molcajete” with the meat mixture.
  4. Return to the oven for an additional 25 minutes or until the filling its bubbling and the squashes are soft.
  5. Remove from oven, plate and garnish with avocado, cilantro and red onion.

Preparation Instructions for the Tomatillo Salsa:

  1. Add olive oil and garlic to a hot saucepan and stir until garlic is toasted.
  2. Add the tomatillos and stir to coat with garlic and olive oil.
  3. Cook for 3-5 minutes over high heat in an effort to caramelize the tomatillos as much as possible.
  4. Add 2 cups diced onions and fold into the tomatillos.
  5. Add 2 cups water, bring to a simmer and cook until tomatillos are soft.
  6. Puree the mixture using a blender or immersion blender.
  7. Season with kosher salt to your liking. Set aside.These vegetable creations freeze and reheat very well. Allow them to cool, then wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 6 months. Enjoy!

“Keep It Paleo!”

Zone Breakdown:

Proteins: (40)

We have two sources of protein for this recipe.  The first comes from the carne asada.  We have 2 pounds, or 32oz.  With one block equaling 1oz, that gives us 32 protein blocks.  We add in additional 8 blocks from the shrimp.  We have one pound, or 16oz.  for every 2oz of shrimp we use, we get an additional block, bringing our total protein count to 40P.

Carbohydrates: (35)

Our main source of carb blocks come from our acorn squash.  WE know that one acorn weighs around 430g.  One block of acorn squash equals 106g, so that gives us a total of about 20 carb blocks.  Next we add in the tomatillos. One cup of them equal about 132g, and one block equals 220g, so from the 8 cups of tomatillos we add, we get about 5 car blocks.  Then we have 4 cups of onions giving us 8 more blocks because ½ cup equals one block.  Finally we get an additional blocks from the 10 garlic cloves, and one from the ½ red onion added for garnish.  We have a total of 35C.

Fats: (8)

We have a few fats added into this recipe.  The first come from our avocado.  Using whole avocado adds about 8 blocks, as one tablespoon equals one block and we can get about 8 from a whole avocado.  Additional fats will be added if you choose to drizzle olive oil over it.

Balancing Act:

For the most part, the carbs and proteins are fairly balanced.  If we broke it down into 10 portions, we would have 4 protien blocks and 3.5 carb blocks per meal.  The fats are a little low, so feel free to add about a ½ a tablespoon of oil to bring the balance up.

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