Gem squash has a sweet, subtle flavour that contrasts well with olives and sun-dried tomatoes in this recipe. The rice adds substance without changing any of the flavors.

  • 4 whole gem squashes
  • 225 g / 8 oz / 2 cups cooked white long grain rice
  • 75 g / 3 oz / 1½ cups sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped
  • 50 g / 2 oz / ½ cup pitted black olives, chopped
  • 60 ml / 4 tbsp soft goat’s cheese
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 15 ml / 1 tbsp chopped fresh basil leaves, plus fresh basil sprigs, to serve
  • yogurt and mint dressing or green salad, to serve (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F / Gas 4. Using a sharp knife, trim away the base of each gem squash and then slice off the tops. Using a spoon, scoop out and discard the seeds.
  2. Mix the rice, tomatoes, olives, cheese, half the olive oil, and basil in a bowl.
  3. Oil a shallow ovenproof dish with the remaining oil, just large enough to hold the squash side by side. Divide the rice mixture among the squash and place them in the dish.
  4. Cover with foil and bake for about 45-50 minutes, until the squash is tender when pierced with the point of a sharp knife or skewer. Garnish with basil sprigs and serve with a yogurt and mint dressing or with a green salad if you like.
Roasted Squash