Tales from the Hill's Country

Quips, stories and observations from our adventures in marriage and parenting (as told by Katie).

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Spaghetti Squash

Have you heard of spaghetti squash?

You might have seen it at the grocery store and not known what to do with it. I first saw it in my Aunt's kitchen and had no idea what was on her counter top.

This is what a spaghetti squash looks like:
She and my cousins told me that it was amazing... so the next time I went to the store, I picked one up. That was about two years ago... and I've made it many times since!

The hardest part about spaghetti squash is cutting it in half. Use caution. And if possible, get Chris to do it for you. Then don't watch as you fear he will cut his finger off and ruin your dinner.
Once you cut it (notice it's the long way), you'll see a bunch of seeds, similar to a pumpkin:
I always spoon them out and throw them away. You might be able to roast them like you would pumpkin seeds? Don't know... someday I might try.

Regardless of what you do with them, you want to get the seeds out... then place the two sides in a pan with about a half cup of water.

My dear friend asked if she could put them in a pyrex dish. In theory, yes. In reality... no.
See how one is on top of the other?
You don't want that... you want them both flat. I guess if  you had a really large pyrex dish, or a really small spaghetti squash... or you just did one half at a time? But I suggest using a pan.
Again, put about a half cup of water (just enough to barely cover the bottom) and throw into the oven (preheated to 350) for about 40 minutes.

After 40 minutes, take out, flip the squash over (carefully, it's hot) and assess:
If the flesh is tender enough to be loosened with a fork, then it's ready! If not (and it probably isn't) put in the oven for another 10-15 minutes. (I usually don't flip the squash back over, so now it's going into the oven sunny-side-up.)

After another 10-15 minutes, it's probably ready, but if not, throw it in again... I don't think it's very easy to over-cook this thing.

Here's the goal:
It's ready when you can take your fork and easily scrape the flesh (like you would for pulled pork or shredded chicken). As you do, it starts to look like spaghetti!
So now, scrape all the flesh of both sides into a bowl. A medium sized spaghetti squash will yield enough "noodles" for a lot of people (or many meals for a few people-- Chris and I get at least a dinner and two lunches EACH) out of this!
I used the "noodles" just as I would spaghetti and usually add meatballs (or boudin balls) and marinara sauce. I've also seen recipes that call for a little olive oil, salt and pepper (I'd guess that's for a side dish).

I haven't make traditional spaghetti noddles since first trying this recipe! I much prefer this version than the pasta kind. It's lighter and much healthier (and in my opinion tastes better).

Spaghetti squash-- another reason to love Fall!

1 comment:

  1. I love spaghetti squash! thanks for the info : )