2 small acorn squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (about 4 ounces), plus more for topping
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
Chopped fresh parsley, for topping
Position a rack in the upper third of the oven; preheat to 425 degrees F. Put the squash, cut-side up, in a large microwave-safe dish with 1 tablespoon water; dot with 1 tablespoon butter and season with salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and pierce with a knife to vent. Microwave until tender, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion; cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Add the flour and cook, stirring, 3 minutes. Whisk in the milk until smooth, then bring to a simmer and cook until thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the cheese, stirring to melt. Add the nutmeg, 3/4 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper. Stir in the rice and spinach.
Transfer the squash to a rimmed baking sheet and fill with the rice mixture. Sprinkle with more cheese and bake until lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Top with parsley.
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