Stuffed Sugar Pumpkin

1 recipe Curried Brown Rice and Current Stuffing
1 4 to 5 lb. pumpkin
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Prepare stuffing

1. Preheat oven to 350. Mix salt and garlic powder in a small bowl. Cut top from pumpkin and set aside. Remove seeds and strings, rinse and dry inside with paper towels. Prick inside with fork and rub salt and garlic powder mixture into the inside of pumpkin.

2. Stuff pumpkin with Curried Brown Rice and Current Stuffing and replace pumpkin top. Place ½ -inch water in the bottom of a shallow baking dish. Put pumpkin in dish and bake for 1½ hours or until tender. Add more water to pan when necessary to avoid sticking or burning. Also, to avoid over browning, loosely cover pumpkin with foil tent after 30 minutes if necessary.

3. Cut pumpkin into 4 to 6 wedges, giving each person both pumpkin and stuffing.

Note: The 4 to 5 lb. pumpkin can be substituted for 4 to 6 small sugar pumpkins giving each person their pumpkin per plate. Try to find pumpkins with stems. That way the pumpkins can be baked and served with their tops for a more festive presentation.
Curried Brown Rice and Current Stuffing
1 cup brown rice
2 cups water plus 2 teaspoons base or chicken bouillon; or 2 cups chicken stock and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
3/4 to 1 teaspoon curry
1 pound 93 to 98% fat free turkey Italian or breakfast sausage, hot or mild (no more than 2 grams fat per 1-oz serving.
4 cups (1 lb.) fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 large clove garlic, pressed
2 large shallots, minced – optional
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon currants
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/2 teaspoon sage
1/4 teaspoon marjoram

1. Bring water, rice, bouillon and curry to boil in a 4-quart saucepan. Stir; cover pan and reduce heat to low and simmer 50 minutes. Remove pan from heat and allow rice to sit 10 to 15 minutes. Remove lid from pan, gently fluff rice with a fork, cover pan and set aside.

2. Cook sausage and drain grease on paper towels if necessary and set aside. Wipe drippings from pan and preheat on medium. Sauté onion, mushrooms, garlic, and shallots, until tender. Reduce heat to medium-low; add sherry, sausage, currants, remaining spices and cook until liquid is reduced. Add rice to pan and mix all ingredients together. Remove pan from heat and serve or cool if being used as stuffing. Note: If sausage is very lean 95% to 98% fat free, cook together with onions, mushrooms, garlic, shallots.

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