Wednesday, January 5, 2011

What to eat Wednesday- Smitten Kitchen's Moroccan-Spiced Spaghetti Squash

I am not sure why I had never cooked spaghetti squash for my family before. During the Fall I picked one up determined to find something interesting to feed this family.

Then I googled how to cook spaghetti squash. Of course we know how that turned out. More options than I knew what to do with. But a name that I new stood out among the results.

I know that when it comes to delicious she does not hold out. Nor does she skimp on butter.
She was the one who taught me to make pretzels, and other yummy things when I went with Kristie to the ranch.

So I figured this would be the recipe to try.
I love how she adapts recipes. Never a disappointment.

Moroccan-Spiced Spaghetti Squash
Adapted from Gourmet

Serves 4

1 (3 1/2- to 4-pound) spaghetti squash
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or flat-leaf parsley, if you’re cilantro-averse

To cook the squash in a microwave: Pierce squash (about an inch deep) all over with a small sharp knife to prevent bursting. Cook in an 800-watt microwave oven on high power (100 percent) for 6 to 7 minutes. Turn squash over and microwave until squash feels slightly soft when pressed, 8 to 10 minutes more. Cool squash for 5 minutes.

To roast the squash, two methods: If you’d like to roast the squash whole, pierce it all over with a small sharp knife to prevent bursting and bake it in a 375°F oven for one hour. If you are good with a big, sharp kinfe, you can save some time by cutting the squash in half lengthwise, scooping out the seeds and roasting the halves face-down in an oiled baking pan for about 40 minutes in a 375°F oven.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until it is barely golden. Stir in spices and salt and remove from heat.

If you have microwaved or roasted your squash whole, carefully halve it lengthwise (it will give off a lot of steam) and remove the seeds.

Carefully halve squash lengthwise (it will give off steam) and remove and discard seeds. Working over a bowl, scrape squash flesh with a fork, loosening and separating strands as you remove it from skin. Toss with the spiced butter and cilantro.

She suggests serving it with chick-peas to bulk it up a bit. I have done it both ways and like it equally the same.

A tip: this is one of those dishes that really is best the first day. I like it alright after its been in the fridge but it almost seems, dare I say? ... Too buttery as a leftover. There. I said it.

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