Monday, November 09, 2009

homegrown spaghetti squash

Doesn't have the ring to it like "homegrown tomatoes", does it? But this is probably the week where I'll enjoy the last of the homegrown tomatoes and move on to more durable storage things, like squash.

I did not end up with a lot of winter squash from my garden this year. However, a coworker started leaving bags of produce at my desk, by my car, everywhere, and among them was an abundance of winter squash. Mostly butternut and acorn, which are delectable and good keepers. I have probably over fifty pounds of edible squash flesh in my pantry and I am grateful.

I did manage, however, to produce a few spaghetti squash. This was my first year growing them, and considering the other varieties I planted didn't justify their space in the garden, I am impressed at the productivity of the spaghetti variety.

I must take issue with the name thing. While, when cooked, they do produce strands of flesh that may resemble a pasta product, the flavor is much more sublime than noodles, which are really just an excuse to pour on the sauce. I would never overwhelm the delicate flavor of spaghetti squash with a heavy pasta sauce. A little butter and salt and pepper, maybe garlic will do just fine, thank you.

They are really easy to cook too. The hardest part is cutting one in half, which I may have to resort to a kitchen size chain saw for. Once it is cut, by whatever means, scoop out the seeds, then spread a little butter or olive oil over the halves, put some water in the bottom of the pan, and bake at 375 for about an hour. Then take a fork and tease out the strands of cooked squash. Season as desired. That's it. We had them with boneless pork chops and rotini tonight (just because Mr. Attitude will eat more of anything when it is served with pasta!)


Pablo said...

I love spaghetti squash. It must be a seasonal produce around here since I don't see it often at the store.

Good work on that full pantry.

Jayne said...

YUMMY Deb! I love spaghetti squash, and that sounds just so delicious!

RuthieJ said...

sounds good Deb. I've never tried spaghetti squash, but now I'll have to because your version sounds pretty yummy!

Deanna said...

I, too, love spaghetti squash. I am surpsied by how well it keeps. I had a couple last all winter in a cooler room in the house. It also cooks up nicely in the microwave. Enjoy!

Deb said...

Pablo- It probably is too much of a specialty thing yet to be seen much in the store. I'm happy to have a full pantry too. Squash, onions, carrots, potatoes, garlic...the essentials!

Jayne- It was delicious. Even the leftovers were delicious. I could eat it for lunch as a main course.

RuthieJ- It is so easy, and even if you don't care for other types of squash, this one is really mild but tasty!

Deanna- It's nice to know they keep well, since I'll be planting more next year. I'll have to try it in the microwave some time- thanks for the idea!

MojoMan said...

I know what you mean about cutting a hard squash. I haven't tried it yet, but I've heard a suggestion to pre-cook it a bit before cutting. It's much easier after it softens up a bit.

I'm off to stuff a sugar pumpkin with a chickpea and rice curry before baking. Yum!

Deb said...

MojoMan- Hmmm...that just might work! And your dinner sounds great. Enjoy!

MAW said...

Microwave the squash. I cut a slit in the squash, put the squash on a paper plate, and microwave on high for 15 - 20 minutes. When squash is squishy on the outside its done. Take out, you can cut in half with a butter knife if you want to. Scoop out seeds, scoop pulp into a bowl and add your seasonings. I like S&P butter and brown sugar!!

Deb said...

MAW- that sounds so easy! Although I have one squash that may be too big for the microwave. Thanks!