What can I say about spaghetti squash? It’s a delicious and nutritious flavorful alternative to pasta, wholewheat or otherwise. Mild in both flavor and texture it’s an ideal base for a variety of spices, herbs and vegetables not to mention a fun hands-on cooking project to complete with children and add a touch of “vegetable sophistication” to the table- in other words something for everyone!
A few suggestions from my critics (which would include my daughter and husband) would include “More cheese!” (Kristina is going through a stage- albeit her whole 2 years of life so far- of demanding cheese morning, noon and night) and oddly enough my usually cream sauce hating husband decided to smother his dish in sour cream. Whether this was a reaction to a calcium deficiency or more of a desire to drown out the residual flavor of the artichoke hearts he took great pains to remove, I don’t know. All I can say to their criticisms is to each his or her own- and the suggestion they make their own dinner next time!
Other ideas for additions to this dish would include grilled shrimp, lemon zest, and red onions- certainly any variations you would want to try can only enhance the humble and oft overlooked spaghetti squash; perhaps even sour cream.
1 medium spaghetti squash
1 bunch scallions
1/2 cup pitted black olives
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
3 artichoke hearts, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 sprigs fresh oregano
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees; slice squash lengthwise and carefully scoop out seeds. Place face down on oiled baking sheet and bake 25 to 35 minutes- or until squash is tender and renders easily.
2) Prepare a baking dish, and crack fresh salt and pepper over sliced tomatoes, garlic, and oregano leaves and drizzle with olive oil. Set aside for the time being.
3) Meanwhile, combine sliced scallions, black olives, artichoke hearts and remaining olive oil in a bowl, tossing to coat.
4) When squash is done cooking take it out of the oven and set it aside, allowing it to cool to the touch. Turn the broiler on and place tomatoes under broiler for approximately 4 minutes; the fragrance of roasting garlic and tomatoes will be hard to miss.
5) Using a fork carefully scrape strands of squash out of the halves, piling into a bowl- squash will resemble spaghetti- continue until almost reaching the skin.
6) Toss spaghetti squash strands in olive and artichoke mixture along with tomatoes. Add salt & pepper to taste and top with crumbled feta before serving.