So naturally since October 1st, I’ve seemed to be in an “all things fall” kind of mood. I mean I like the way fall feels and all, but really to me fall= Christmas is ALMOST here. So basically I just pretend to be all about fall until it’s appropriate to eat my mother-in-law’s fudge and my aunt’s haystacks all day, every day in December. When I haven’t been obsessing over buying boots, oversized fringe ponchos, and OPI’s Germany Collection I have been thinking about fall foods. I think of pumpkins (duh) and squash. Which brings me to my point… spaghetti squash. It is such a great alternative to noodles. It is lower in carbohydrates and calories and you will get some extra nutrients in as well!
Now spaghetti squash can be on the pricey side but you have to catch it right at the grocery store. It is coming into season as we speak and I found it at Kroger last week for .79 cents a pound. The first time I bought it, it was clearly not in season and I spent about 8 bucks on a vegetable that made my husband gag. It was fabulous… not.
DOES MY HUSBAND LIKE IT?
Jess absolutely loathes spaghetti squash. I guess the first time I cooked it, I led on that it was going to be EXACTLY like spaghetti (or so he says) and it is not. This winter I am determined to change his mind about this vegetable. I keep asking him if there is a certain way that he’d like to try it but he is being very stubborn in this category. So for now, my strategy is to keep doing what I’m doing until he develops a taste for it….then I can get all Healthy Bobby Flay on him.
I have had so many people ask me how to cook spaghetti squash, not realizing that it is actually different from the squash we see in the summer. Although still in the squash family of course, it is a different vegetable at the grocery store. For this post I am going to simply identify and talk about how to cook spaghetti squash.
Below is a picture of a typical sized spaghetti squash. As you can see, it is round like a melon and a bit bigger than a normal sized squash.
There are several ways to cook a spaghetti squash, but today I will tell you how I typically make ours.
First, poke holes in the sides with a fork. Then put it on a plate and microwave for ~10 minutes. This step is done to soften the squash and make it easy to cut into. I have heard of people cooking it completely in the microwave… when I tried this I blew mine up and made a complete mess of my kitchen so I’m sticking to my way from now on.
After you take it out of the microwave (with oven mitts), cut it in half, hot dog style. I typically get Jess to do this part because sometimes its still a little tough.
(If you need proof that he finds spaghetti squash disgusting.. just check out that face!)
After you cut it in half, dig out the seeds from the inside.
**Side Note: If you want to save the seeds, top them with a little olive oil and salt and bake them for about 15 minutes! They taste like baked pumpkin seeds… or even better!
Once all of the seeds are out, place the spaghetti squash halves face down on a lightly greased pan.
Bake at 350 for about 35 minutes or until soft.
After you remove the squash from the oven, repeatedly scrape a fork across the inside. The squash should come out in noodle form (hence the term “spaghetti squash”).
Scrape until you get all of the noodles out and voila! Spaghetti squash!
You can serve it plain but if this is your first time having it, I highly recommend cooking it with other ingredients. The first time I ever made it I just added a little butter and parmesan cheese, sauteed it for 10 minutes and it was fabulous.
This time, I sauteed it with some chopped onions, parmesan cheese, feta cheese and garlic salt. Then I added chopped tomatoes and chopped kalamata olives.
Jess asked me to report that he DID try my newest spaghetti squash dish, but was not a fan due to the texture of the noodles. Of course, I expected nothing less. I did get a fabulous new spaghetti squash recipe from a co-worker yesterday that I feel is more to his liking.
I will not give up!!!!!