I love going to the market in autumn. There is something about the appearance of orange pumpkins, fresh apples, pears, and beautifully colored squash that just begs for me to linger in the produce aisle.
Every year as autumn produce appears I pick up several fall squash and end up giving them to my mom because I either run out of time to prepare them or can’t decide how to prepare them. Since Mom is now five and a half hours away, I decided that I could do this and started with something that seemed easy enough to prepare: spaghetti squash.
Just out of curiosity I asked on my Facebook page a good way to prepare spaghetti squash and got several answers.
**” cut squash in 1/4 slices, rinse place in bowl that has sea salt in it for 1 hour……cook in olive oil until tender, add tomato slices, garlic, basil and Italian seasoning to taste, cover with provolone and Parmesan cheese…..it works well zucchini….not sure about squash.”
**”cut it in half and roasted it with a little olive oil on top”
**”I just cut mine in half, season with Italian herbs and olive oil, bake cut side up and then use a fork to shred it into spaghetti.”
**”Call your mama. She told me how to do it once.”
I guess I was making this process a lot harder than it seemed, because the very last comment I got was from one of my daughters who said,
“I have a suggestion … Cook soon I’m hungry thanks(: love you.”
The only tough part of preparing a spaghetti squash is cutting it to cook! It’s a whole lot like cutting a pumpkin, so make sure you have a really good knife and plenty of energy to accomplish this task.
After cutting the squash, I did nothing more than flip them cut side down on a cookie sheet and baked at 350 degrees about forty-five minutes to an hour. They are “done” when you can easily insert a knife into the skin.
After removing the squash from the oven, carefully flip them over so that the inside of the squash is exposed. Use an ice cream scoop to carefully remove the seeds and pulp. The squash will be very tender and you don’t want to remove the “spaghetti”!
After disposing of the pulp, take a fork and just scrape the sides and you will have “spaghetti” ready to serve.
I did not season the squash at all, but did make an easy marinara sauce to accompany it.
2 8-ounce cans of no-salt tomato sauce
2 roma tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup diced mushrooms
1/4 cup diced onion
1 clove minced garlic
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. basil
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. sugar (to counter the acidity of the tomatoes)
**If you use fresh herbs, double the measures.
Simmer all ingredients together about 30 minutes on low heat to allow flavors time mesh.
I can’t believe I have thought this was difficult all these years! I fixed a nice green salad to accompany our squash. Since the marinara and squash had a slightly sweet taste to it, I used a homemade vinaigrette on the salad.
The kids really loved trying the spaghetti squash, especially with a tablespoon of fresh Parmesan cheese on top.
Do you have a favorite dish to prepare as autumn produce rolls in?
Linking up with Foodie Friday today.