Friday, April 17, 2015

Parmesan Spaghetti Squash

I can't pass up a giant vegetable. When I was perusing the stack of squash at the grocery store, all the other orbs paled in comparison to this glorious gourd. So I popped it into my car-shaped grocery cart, and my son steered us through the rest of our shopping trip. (He's the designated cart driver.)

It wasn't until the clerk rang us up at check-out that I discovered my squash was five pounds. FIVE POUNDS. All the recipes I read for preparing spaghetti squash called for a two pound squash. Whoops. Guess I got a little greedy there.

If your spaghetti squash isn't quite as ginormous as mine, you might not need to bake it for quite as long. But I wouldn't cut down the amount of Parmesan cheese. You can never have too much cheese.

Let's get cooking!

Parmesan Spaghetti Squash

1 large spaghetti squash
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Meanwhile, microwave squash for about five minutes. This will soften the squash and make it easier to cut in half. Allow the squash to cool for a minute so you don't burn your fingers, then slice it in half lengthwise. Scoop out and discard the seeds.

Season cut sides of squash with salt and pepper and place cut-side down on a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake until the flesh is tender, about 45 minutes if your squash is a five-pound behemoth. It will probably take closer to 30 minutes for a smaller squash. Use a fork to shred the squash into strands and place in a bowl.

If your squash has released lots of liquid into the bowl, try to drain some of it off. Stir in butter, basil, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with extra Parmesan sprinkled over the top.

P.S. Want more squash? Try making acorn squash in the microwave. Yep. The microwave, people. Too easy for words.

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