Our first few spaghetti squash were ripe for the plucking the other day.
Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce and Fresh Mozzarella
*Serves 2 as a hefty main course and 4 as a side [or a smaller main dish served with bread and salad]
1 spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise with seeds removed
6 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced [grated mozzarella would be fine]
4 T grated parmesan cheese
2 T fresh basil, torn into pieces
*One of the fun parts of this dish is that it can be as simple as opening a jar of marinara and adding whatever sauteed veggies you want [mushrooms, onions, zucchini, red peppers]. I chose to make a really chunky tomato sauce.
2 T olive oil
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 small yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tsp balsamic vinegar [I used this in place of red wine]
2, 14.5 oz cans of diced tomatoes
1 tsp each dried oregano and basil
1/2 tsp sugar
Begin by placing both squash halves in a large stock pot and covering them with cold water. Bring the water to a boil over high heat and then let boil for 15 minutes.
|I decided to boil up both of my squash so that the other one would be ready to go in the future!|
My sauce was made by heating the olive oil and red pepper flakes together in a large frying pan over medium heat for about a minute. Add the onions, salt and pepper and let them saute over medium heat until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and let that cook for about a minute.
Deglaze the pan with the balsamic vinegar. Add the diced tomatoes and mash them slightly with a potato masher [a fork would work fine]. Add the dried oregano, dried basil, sugar and stir to combine. At this point, I added a couple leftover veggies that I wanted to use up [4 slices of leftover grilled zucchini that I chopped and half of a 10 oz. pack of frozen spinach].
Let the tomato sauce simmer until the spaghetti squash has cooked. Using tongs, remove each squash half from the stock pot.
Use a fork to break up the inside of each squash and separate the squash from the skin, it should look like a "bowl" of spaghetti by the time you are done.
Add about a cup of tomato sauce to each squash half [feel free to adjust this amount to the size of your squash and your desired sauciness level]. Sprinkle a tablespoon of torn, fresh basil and 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese over each squash half. Stir to combine the squash, sauce, parm and basil.
Top each squash half with 3 oz of sliced mozzarella.
Broil until the mozzarella begins to brown. Serve with extra parmesan and basil.