Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Spaghetti Squash


Okay, so last year I did a little “how-to” on cooking acorn squash.  I guess I didn’t know that such an easy food was a mystery to a lot of people.  I thought I’d talk a little bit about spaghetti squash today.  It comes after it took me telling all the people in the check-out line of the grocery store what it was.  :)  Spaghetti squash is a little guy with a lot of bang for his buck.  They aren’t typically very expensive and they are super yummy.  Even the kids will enjoy it . . . maybe . . . well, you know how kids are.

I’ve seen a lot of different techniques for cooking spaghetti squash.  I don’t like boiling them in water, etc.  Dry roasting in the oven is going to be the easiest.  If you have a sharp knife (and are very very careful), you can cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds and put it rind side up in a lightly greased casserole dish or roasting pan.


If you do not want to try that, you can still put the entire squash in the dish as above without cutting it.  If you cut the squash, cook it in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.  If you decide not to cut it, cook it in a 375 degree oven for about an hour.  The flesh of the spaghetti squash will not get soft or mushy when it is done.  It will still be a little firm and that is what you want so that you get those yummy strands.

DSC_0022Next, you want to use a fork to scrape out the flesh.  I usually do this when it is still a little warm and use an oven mitt or a hot pad to hold it.  My husband helped me on this day so I could get a picture.

DSC_0024  As you can see, the flesh will come out in strands like spaghetti (hence the name).  You can pretty much clean it all the way to the outside rind.  It produces a lot of yummy squash and should last you a couple days.

Now, from here there are many schools of thought on how to flavor your squash.  My parents empty a can of crushed tomatoes over it and eat it more like spaghetti.  I’ve seen a recipe where you add 1/4 cup chicken broth, 2 Tbsp olive oil, chopped parsley and salt and pepper.  Personally, I like to melt some butter into it (easy to do when it’s still hot) and add salt, pepper, and freshly grated parmesan cheese.

DSC_0027 YUMMY!  I was able to fool my toddler into thinking it was pasta and she ate it.  That is, until she heard me say it was squash.  Then all bets were off.  Anyway, enjoy it now because it’s typically not around all year.  Enjoy!

P.S. – I’m working on better pictures this year.  What do you think?


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