Spaghetti squash and I have not had a friendly history. I remember trying it some years ago when it was touted as a pasta substitute, and I think I threw it into the trash after the first few forkfuls. Blech.
OK, I'm eating healthier these days, and loving previously-hated vegetables like cauliflower and eggplant. Time to give the spaghetti squash another go. I looked at some recipes and what was in my fridge, bought a small spaghetti squash at the farm stand over the weekend, and got to work.
Much to my surprise, I liked it! And at 40 calories a cup with loads of fiber and vitamins, it's a great vehicle for a moderate amount cheese.
Spaghetti Squash Casserole I Don't Hate, or, to be fancy, Spaghetti Squash au Gratin
1 medium spaghetti squash
cooking oil spray
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, diced
1 small can diced tomatoes, drained of liquid
1/2 cup nonfat ricotta cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesean cheese, plus 2 Tbs. for sprinkling
1/2 cup lowfat shredded cheddar
salt and pepper
fresh basil and parsley (about 1/4 cup)
2 Tbs. bread crumbs
1. Cut the squash in half, and scoop out the seeds. Spray a baking sheet wtht oil, and lay the squash cut-sides down. Put some water into the pan, cover with foil, and bake in a 350 oven till soft, about 40 minutes or so. Let squash cool until you can handle it.
2. Meanwhile, saute the mushrooms and onion in a oil-sprayed skillet until the mushrooms give up the liquid and then begin to brown. Add the garlic and can of tomatoes. Remove from heat, and put mixture into a large oil-sprayed casserole dish.
3. Using a fork, comb out the squash strands into the casserole dish with the mushroom mixture. Add the rest of the ingredients, except for the bread crumbs. Mix well. Sprinkle the bread crumbs on top, and the 2 Tbs. more cheese.
4. Bake uncovered in a 400 oven for 20 minutes. You can run the dish briefly under the broiler to crisp the top.