October 15, 2010

Spaghetti Squash with Basil Pesto and Toasted Squash Seeds

Hooray for chilly, breezy fall mornings! This week has been very busy with work, volunteering at school, church, piano lessons, etc. Maddy was off to school and, as I sipped on my hot cup of coffee this morning, I checked my workload (medical transcriptionist) and was pleased to see that it happened to be very light! I looked in my fridge and thought to myself, today is the perfect day to roast that spaghetti squash. I have also been wanting to make Giada's basil pesto, so I made that while the squash was roasting. The pesto turned out delicious and It went so incredibly well with the spaghetti squash. The toasted squash seeds were the perfect compliment to this dish.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cut the squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Set the seeds aside for roasting.

  • Lightly grease a baking sheet. Set the squash cut-side down onto the baking sheet.
  • Roast for 30 to 90 minutes, depending on the size of your squash. The squash is done when a knife can easily be inserted through the skin of the squash.
  • Allow the squash to cool before handling.
  • Using a fork, scrape the squash into a bowl and set aside.
  • Turn oven temperature down to 300 for roasting of the seeds.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash Seeds:
  • Whole spaghetti squash seeds. (I had a small squash, so it yielded approximately 1/4 c of seeds.
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/8 tsp garlic salt
  • Boil the squash seeds in heavily-salted water for about 20 minutes, until they turn gray.
  • Drain the seeds and pat dry with paper towels.
  • In a small bowl, combine the seeds, butter, olive oil and garlic salt.
  • Spread the seeds out in one layer on a baking sheet and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until they turn brown.

Giada De Laurentiis' Basil Pesto:
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 2 c fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 c toasted pine nuts
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 c - 3/4 c extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 c grated Parmesan
  • In a food processor, add the garlic, basil leaves, pine nuts, salt, and pepper. Pulse until finely chopped.
  • With the blender still running, slowly pour in 1/2 c of olive oil. Check for a thick, yet smooth consistency, adding more oil if necessary. Transfer to a bowl and stir in 1/2 c of Parmesan.
  • Store in an air-tight container in the fridge.

Put it all together:
  • 2 c roasted spaghetti squash
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp pesto, or to taste (I use 1/4 c)
  • 4 pieces sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tbsp shredded Romano cheese, or more to taste
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tbsp roasted spaghetti squash seeds
  • Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and stir for one minute.
  • Add the spaghetti squash to the skillet. Stir in the pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, Romano cheese and basil; cook until the cheese melts and the ingredients are warmed through.
  • Top with roasted seeds.
  • Enjoy!

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