Shaffer's wild rice 'stuffing'.

Shaffer's wild rice 'stuffing'. (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Servings: 16

Note: From Christian Shaffer.

1/4 cup blanched hazelnuts

10 ounces (1 1/2 cups) wild rice

1 small onion, sliced

1 parsnip, peeled, roughly chopped

2 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt,

divided

1 small butternut squash (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled and seeded

4 tablespoons salted butter,

divided

1 large pomegranate

2 tablespoons roasted hazelnut oil

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste



1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and toast them until lightly browned, about 10 minutes.

2. In a large saucepan, combine the rice, onion, parsnip and 2 1/2 teaspoons salt in 1 quart cold water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a low simmer and cook for 45 minutes to an hour, until the rice grains open and are mostly tender.

3. Cut the squash into one-half inch cubes. In a medium pan, sauté the squash in 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat until they're cooked but not mushy, 7 to 8 minutes.

4. Break the toasted hazelnuts in half with your hands.

5. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Drain the rice and pour it into a large bowl. Remove and discard the parsnip and add the squash, hazelnuts and the seeds from one-half pomegranate, reserving a few seeds for garnish.

6. Cut the remaining half pomegranate in half and squeeze the juice over the rice mixture. Add the hazelnut oil, one-fourth teaspoon salt and the pepper, and place the rice in an ovenproof dish. Dot the rice with the remaining butter and warm it in the oven about 15 minutes. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and serve.



Each serving: 156 calories; 4 grams protein; 23 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 6 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 8 mg. cholesterol; 217 mg. sodium.