The first Friday of the month is reserved for recipes. You can see additional First Friday Food posts here.
I like spaghetti squash in principle. It *seems* like it is a good idea, however, I never seem to like the results. I’ve tried spaghetti squash recipes repeatedly, but it always came out kind of…cold and squash-y. This time, I’ve finally found a winner!
Spaghetti squash is kind of like magic. It looks like any regular squash…
…but then it somehow separates into these individual
tentacles strands of spaghetti. So, kind of unlike every other squash you’ve ever seen. Unlike every other VEGETABLE you’ve ever seen. I mean, it’s definitely not some kind of alien fruit or impregnation device, right? Heh, because that would be *crazy*, right? RIGHT?
Make sure you squeeze as much water out of the squash as possible, so it’s not runny (also, it can’t hurt *just in case* they are actual alien tentacles). Throw some salt in there too; you never really can be too careful with potential slimy alien tentacles.
Maybe I just like lasagne. When I was a kid, lasagne was my “birthday meal”. So if I ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO INGEST ALIEN TENTACLES (and/or impregnation devices), then disguising them as lasagna is really the way to go.
(This post was definitely written by Shane Halbach, being sound of mind and body, and not some alien overlord guest blogging and trying to make you eat our weird alien fruits and/or impregnation devices.)
Recipe from The Kitchn:
- 5 pounds spaghetti squash (2 medium-sized squash)
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 2 cups ricotta, whole or 2%
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped parsley
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella
- Chopped parsley or basil, to garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut the squashes in half and scoop out the seeds. Lay them cut-side down in a roasting pan or other baking dish, and add about an inch of water. Roast for 45 to 60 minutes, until soft when poked with a fork. Transfer to a cooling rack until cool enough to handle.
- While the squash is roasting, warm the olive oil in a high-sided skillet or saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the onions and cook until translucent, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add the ground beef and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cook until well-browned, breaking up the beef into small crumbles, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Continue simmering the sauce until the squashes are ready, 5 to 20 minutes. Taste the sauce and add more salt if desired.
- Use a fork to shred the inside of the squash, leaving about a half-inch of squash left in the shell. Mix the shredded squash into the tomato sauce. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, the parsley and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
- Layer one half of the tomato-squash mixture into a 9×13 pan and top with the ricotta. Top with the second half of the tomato-squash mixture.
- Bake for 25 minutes, then sprinkle with mozzarella. Bake another 15 to 20 minutes, until bubbly.
- Sprinkle parsley or basil over the tops and serve immediately. Leftovers will keep for 1 week in the fridge.