Friday, August 10, 2012

Twice-Baked Spaghetti Squash

Our family likes spaghetti squash. I mean, who wouldn't like a vegetable that comes off in strings? You can enjoy it plain with butter, salt and pepper, use it like pasta covered in sauce, or do things like coat it in pesto and Parmesan, then bake it again!

First, we're going to cut it in half and scrape out the seed. You can just throw those away, you don't need them. Try to get the halves pretty equal in size so they both roast through evenly.

Next, you're going to drizzle those halves with about 1 tsp olive oil each, and brush it around to coat the squash insides. Then either use a store bought seasoning mix or make your own. I used 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp rosemary, and 1 tsp garlic powder. The rosemary I rubbed between my fingers to break it up a little and release the oils. Sprinkle your seasonings over the squash halves.

Turn each half cut side down on the baking sheet. Pour around 1/4-1/3 cup water on the sheet. Cover tightly with tinfoil. The steam helps the squash soften as it roasts, important so you can shred those strings!

Bake at 350. You can start checking the squash around 40 minutes.

See how my fork is poking right through? This took about 60 minutes for my squash, mine was fairly large. At 40 minutes, if the squash isn't done and seems really dry, feel free to add a little more water before re-covering with foil. Remove from the oven and let cool until you can handle the halves.

Using a fork, scrape out the pulp of the squash. You'll see how the strings follow the shape of the squash. I got all the way down to the peel this time.

Place the squash in a bowl. Add in 2 Tbsp pesto, I used a Classico Basil Pesto from the local grocery store. Also 1/2 cup Parmesan. Stir this in until it's well distributed. Your house will be smelling amazing by this point, by the way. My son was so anxious to dig in and was sad that he had to wait.

Sprinkle with an additional 1/4 cup of Parmesan.

Bake in the oven, uncovered, until heated through and cheese is starting to melt in and get browned on top, about 20-30 more minutes.

Does that not look amazing? This makes enough for leftovers to use as a pasta substitute since the cheese and extra baking means this dish isn't all gloopy like spaghetti squash can be sometimes.

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