Here’s a quick post for you: I made spaghetti squash for the first time tonight!
If you’re not familiar, spaghetti squash is this wonderful winter squash that, when cooked, pulls apart in noodle like strands. A popular way to eat it is as a substitute for pasta and that is exactly what I did tonight.
Here is how to make Spaghetti Squash Bolognese.
First, slice your squash in half (carefully! use a good, sharp knife) and place it cut side up on a cookie sheet. Rub with olive oil and top with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Now, start with the sauce:
1 medium carrot (or equivalent amount of baby carrots because that is what you have in the fridge right now)
2 celery ribs
1 medium onion
3 garlic cloves
2 Tbsp olive oil
A large pinch of dried oregano
1 Lb lean or medium ground meat (either beef or pork or a combination of the two)
A small can of tomato paste (~6oz)
A large pinch of dried thyme
1.5 cups liquid made up of milk, water, and dry white wine. I didn’t have wine in the house tonight, so I used vermouth (1/4 cup), milk (3/4 – 1cup) and water instead (1/4 – 1/2 cup).
Finely chop carrot, celery, and onion. Now you have “mirepoix” or “soffritto”! Finely slice or mince the garlic. In a heavy pot or dutch oven over med-high heat, cook your mirepoix and garlic in oil with oregano until it starts to soften.
Add the ground meat and cook, stirring to break down the meat, until the meat is browning and no longer pink.
Add tomato paste (between 1/2 and a full can – I used a full one), thyme, and liquids. Stir to combine. Gently simmer, covered, for 40-50 minutes or until the sauce is thickened to your liking.
**Consider adding pancetta or bacon to your bolognese
When you’ve added the mirepoix to your pot, start preheating the oven to 375F. Once your bolognese is ready to simmer, put your squash in the oven for 40-50 minutes, until it is soft when poked with a fork.
After the squash comes out of the oven, take your sauce off heat. If you want to add fresh herbs, do that now. If basil were in season I would add some. I meant to add parsley, but forgot about it. Salt and pepper your bolognese to taste!
Let your squash cool for a few minutes so that you can touch it. Then, use a fork to pull the strands of squash away from the skin.
Put your squash noodles in a bowl; top with bolognese and you’re done!
Pros of Squash: Lighter than pasta, lower calorie and more nutritious.
Cons of Squash: Probably costs more per serving than pasta, though it is not expensive. It takes longer to cook.
One squash will feed me for 3 or 4 meals and if there is any leftover bolognese, I will freeze it to enjoy during exam period.
Try it out and enjoy!