Spaghetti squash is one of those ingredients that I like to use (because ya'll know how we love pasta in this house!). It gives us a little more veggies and just switches things up on occasion. I've tried this squash with plenty of sauces, but my absolute favorite is this recipe.
Baked Spaghetti Squash with Vodka Sauce
1 small spaghetti squash
1 recipe Vodka Sauce (recipe below)
1 lemon, cut into wedges (optional)
1/2 lb Italian turkey sausage, cooked into crumbles (optional)
Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
To bake the squash, you'll need to cut it in half lengthwise. Please only attempt to do this with a sharp knife as the squash is rather hard to cut and I don't want you all to get maimed.
Once cut, scrape out the seeds and the stringy portions from the center of the squash. You can reserve the seeds and bake them as you would pumpkin seeds (or toss them, your choice). Rub some oil onto a baking sheet and place the squash cut side down onto the baking sheet. Bake in a 350 F oven for about 45 minutes, or until the squash is tender and can be punctured easily with a fork or butter knife.
Remove the squash from the oven and allow to cool slightly before handling. When it is cool enough to touch (you can also use an oven mitt or oven-safe glove like I do because I am not quite so patient at this point), scrape the insides of the squash with a fork and remove the pasta-like strands. Place the strands of squash in a large bowl or smaller serving-size bowls and top with the vodka sauce. I like to serve with a bit of grated pecorino romano, chiffonade basil and a wedge of lemon which I find breaks up all the sweet flavors of the sauce and squash. Another option is to top with sausage crumbles; the heat from the sausage also compliments the sweetness of the vodka sauce & squash.
adapted slightly from this Food Network recipe
1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, chopped fine
1 carrot, chopped fine
2 (32-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
2 dried bay leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 c. vodka3/4 c. heavy cream, at room temperature3/4 c. grated Pecorino Romano
In a large dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add the celery and carrot and continue to cook until all the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the cans of tomatoes and bay leaves and reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Remove the bay leaf and adjust seasonings.
Stir in the vodka and reduce by a quarter, stirring often. Once reduced, stir in the cream and then the cheese. Stir to combine. Once heated through, you can serve or allow to cool to room temperature before freezing. The sauce can be frozen for up to 6 months.