By: Kathleen Neafsey
Okay, I’ll admit it: I’ve purchase spaghetti squash in the past, with the intention of creating a tasty, healthful meal only to see them get tossed away before I had the opportunity to use them. Truth is, I was somewhat intimidated by this yellow orb of wonder; but not anymore! I bought, I baked, I conquered! Turns out, it was one of the easiest, most delicious things I’ve ever made.
Traditionally, spaghetti squash is considered a “winter” squash, harvested mainly in the fall and winter, it is available year round. You may have to look a little harder for it in the summer months, but it’s well worth it! Oddly enough the term I would use to describe the flavor of this dish is “fresh and summery”. Okay, enough chit-chat, let’s get on with this and you can decide for yourself!
Here’s what you’ll need:
One- two pound spaghetti squash
One- medium onion, thinly sliced
Three- medium plum tomatoes, diced
Salt, pepper, oregano to taste
Shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)
First: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the squash in half lengthwise.
Next: Remove the seeds and the strings, as you would when carving a pumpkin.
Then: Drizzle the squash with olive oil, and season with salt, pepper, and oregano.
Place the squash, cut side down, on a baking/cookie sheet and place in the oven.
Bake for 40 minutes.
Remove the pan from the oven. Turn the squash over so the cut side is now facing up. Using a fork, gently pull the strings of the “spaghetti” toward the middle of the shell. If it doesn’t pull easily enough you can put it back in the oven for another ten minutes. Fluff up the strings into the middle of each shell.
Divide the tomatoes and onions between the two shells, and top with the shredded cheese. Return the cookie sheet to the oven, and broil until the cheese is melted and lightly browned.
This can be served as a meal in itself, or a side dish. I left mine in the shells, and served it as a side with grilled chicken. We passed the dish, and everyone helped themselves to their own serving of squash – and I have to say – it was a huge hit!
This is so incredibly easy and tasty – and just when you thought it couldn’t get any better – it’s fat free, cholesterol free, and gluten free. It’s definitely a winner in my book, and now that I’ve conquered my fear, I’ll be making it often!
Kathleen’s Kitchen is a column running on Kate-book.com once a month. It is written by the amazing Kathleen Neafsey, who loves trying new recipes. Follow her on Twitter @dbmomkat. And make sure to look out for her amazingly fun column, Fabri-Kate.