Tuesday, 15 October 2013


Spaghetti Squash

I am obsessed, obsessed I tell you, with spaghetti squash.  It is literally quite an amazing piece of produce.  The things it can do!  Amazing things.  I know, I know you're thinking to yourself, it's just a squash.  But it's a squash that has the ability to transform itself into noodles.  Hot noodles, cold noodles, delightful, delightful noodles.  It's so easy to do.  Just a little roast in the oven, and a plain ol' fork will turn this squash in crisp strings of veggie goodness.  Then it's up to you.

Top with a fresh spaghetti sauce, or toss with some pesto.  Treat it however you treat your favorite pasta, and you'll be in for a treat.  I know, it's not pasta.  But it is a great change to your regular dishes as it has a great texture and flavor of it's own. Besides, it's an amazing way to get your veggies in without going down the boring old side salad route.

Or, you can make this squash the star of the show, and really kick it up a notch.  This dish looks a lot like a salad, but it's really nothing like your typical greens and dressing mixture.  The unique ingredient combinations, combined with the layered serving style make this more of what I'm calling a squash and greens dish.  Yes, that's how creative my dish naming skills are.

Spaghetti Squash

I think I need to work on the styling of this dish.  It looks a bit like a large veggie taco.  But, who doesn't love tacos?  So maybe I was just channeling the taco deliciousness into the squash deliciousness.  However, I did not want to wait to get this posted. It's just so freaking good.

It's fresh and flavourful, such a great dinner that you can just throw together and still feel as though you've had a pretty awesome gourmet meal.  Every bite is a little bit different, with the creaminess of the avocado, the sharpness of the sun dried tomato vinaigrette, the peppery arugula, the smooth and mild ricotta, and the crunch of the walnuts, all working together perfectly.  I've eaten this for four days in a row.  Seriously, it's that good.

Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti Squash & Greens & Ricotta
*I didn't measure anything for this recipe (except the dressing).  I chose a serving plate that would be big enough to feed two people and then just loaded on the amounts that felt right.  So follow your instincts!

Spaghetti squash
Salt & Pepper

Sundried Tomato Vinaigrette
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes
8 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons vinegar
2 tablespoons water
Pinch of sea salt
Pinch of pepper
Juice from half a lime

First, start on the magical transformation of turning the squash in spaghetti.  Cut the squash into half lengthwise, and scoop out all the inside bits and seeds.  Season with salt and pepper, and place face down on a baking sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes or until flesh is tender.  Let cool for about 10 minutes until easy to handle, then use a fork to scrape the flesh out.  It will come out in long thin pieces that look just like spaghetti.  Set aside in a bowl to cool.  I found this dish is best when the squash is room temperature or just a little bit warm.

Start on the dressing.  Blend the sun dried tomatoes, lime and vinegar in a food processor, smoothie maker, hand blender, or whatever floats your boat in your kitchen.  Drizzle in the oil and water, and continue to blend.  Add the salt and pepper to taste.

Decide if you will be serving this on individual plates or one large serving dish, and begin laying out the ingredients.  Start with the arugula and make a solid thick base for the dish with the greens.  Next, put on a very decent helping of the squash.  Don't be shy with these noodles!  Place slices of avocado in the centre and then a few healthy dollops of ricotta.  Top with walnut pieces, and drizzle the dressing all over the dish.  The dressing is quite thick and won't go everywhere, which helps to make every bite have a unique flavor.

Enjoy, and tell nature that you love it too.

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