Last week I introduced my kids to spaghetti squash. They were happily eating away when I crowed about them eating “squash.” The mistake I made was in calling it “squash”. I should have just called it “noodles,” which I tried to do to salvage the meal, but it was too late.
I love spaghetti squash. One summer I grew it in the garden and we ate spaghetti squash weekly until January. That might have been a little much spaghetti squash, even for me.
I took a class on squash once and learned that you can pretty much cook squash any way you want: boiling, baking, roasting, microwave, slow cooker, etc. My preferred way to cook spaghetti squash is to wash it off, set it on a baking sheet, stab it with a knife a few times on the top (so the steam can escape the cavity), and leave it in the oven until it’s soft and an inserted knife doesn’t encounter any resistance. I’ll often bake it at 400F, but it doesn’t matter what temp you use; the hotter the oven, the faster it will cook, of course.
Once it’s soft, remove it from the oven, let it cook for maybe 20 minutes, until you can handle it, and slice it lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and discard. Then, take a fork and gently work it through the strands like a comb, until you have lots of “noodles.”
At this point, I usually put a pile of squash on a plate and top it with marinara sauce and veggies for a quick and easy meal.
If you’re trying to avoid simple carbs, like pasta, spaghetti squash is a great substitute. Filling, yet completely digestable as a whole food, we like to have it as a main course.
I had some left over last week, so I added it to homemade chicken soup and used it as soup noodles. This got a mixed review from the kids: my daughter loved it and my son refused to touch it.
Win some, lose some. As usual, I’ll keep presenting the new food until it becomes familiar and accepted. In the meantime, I’ve still got some extra squash left over. I’m thinking about adding it to a quiche of rainbow chard and mushrooms… I’ll keep you updated.