I have a troubled past when it comes to squash. I boldly resisted it as a child, as I recall, since I’m a picky veg eater, but I promise, now I’m trying things.
Today’s culinary adventure is spaghetti squash with a sausage marinara. I saw a video about a spaghetti squash chicken parm but I like pork with my tomato sauce, I suppose. I’ve only had squash this way one other time – a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away (Calgary), and it was moose sausage. Well done, Jamie.
I haven’t got much pomp and circumstance steam in the ol’ engine tonight so I’m going to get to business. I would like to apologize for the weird lighting in my kitchen.
We’ll start by roasting our squash. Cut it in half, brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Turn over to cut side and roast at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes. Should be able to pull away from the skin, sort of soft but still holds its shape. A little crisp on the edges is a good thing.
Meantime, I’ve used some sweet basil pork sausages, pulled out of their casings and are now browning in a pan.
For the record, if you don’t want to use pork, it’s cool – beef or chicken would do fine as well.
When the sausage is cooked, drain the meat in a bowl with paper towel – stuff’s kind of greasy so it’s best to dry it out a bit. It’s going to hang out next to the sleepy kale for a while. (Oh god, please forgive me for the blurry photo. Messy hands + phone = shoddy photography.)
In the same pan, in a few leftover bits of sausage grease, cook some onions and shallot.
I’ve now emptied a full jar of canned tomatoes into the pan, seasoned with a bay leaf, a big handful of oregano and some salt and pepper. We have time so we’ll let it cook down and thicken with tomato paste.
By now, the squash is done and scraped clean. This is where the boat comes in – try not to pierce the skin.
Our tomato sauce has been simmering 15 minutes, and I’ve added the sausage back in.
Keep simmering. This amount of time can vary as much as you like. You can cook for an hour and let all the liquid cook out, or you can cook less and thicken with tomato paste, just a few spoonfuls at a time. Check your seasonings. And remember that the longer you let it simmer, the less tomato paste you’ll have to use and the better the flavor.
I’d imagine you know by now that we put kale in everything. Why not?
Mix that mess together. Mmm pile of veggies.
It’s gone back in the oven at 350 for 15 minutes to melt the grated cheese I put on top. I picked mozza and parm.
I am so astounded at how much I like this. Really.
Next post preview – excellent crock pot snack mix!
- one spaghetti squash
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 3-5 pork sausages (5 will give you enough leftovers for pasta later)
- one shallot
- 3 cloves garlic
- one large jar or can of tomatoes (whole, preferably)
- bay leaf
- tbsp oregano
- a few handfuls of kale
- tbsp or two of butter
- grated cheese (definitely parmesan)
Oven to 375. Cut squash in half lengthwise, brush with oil and season. Roast for 40 minutes, or until squash is tender. Remove sausages from casings and brown in a saucepan. Remove meat from pan, and drain over paper towel. Drain most of the fat from the pan. Add shallot and garlic and cook for a minute or two before adding tomatoes and seasonings. Simmer for 30 minutes, re-adding meat halfway through. Scoop out roasted squash, stir in chopped kale and marinara. Re-fill the squash skins, top with grated cheese and bake at 350 for 15 minutes.