Although my kids are pretty good eaters and almost always try a bite of something new, I'm trying to be more adventurous in my cooking and eating, to expose them to new foods. For example, I realize that just because I'm not a big fan of beans doesn't mean that I shouldn't make them. Maybe my kids will end up liking them and I won't know if I don't expose them to these new foods. I think I tried making spaghetti squash once before, years ago and wasn't a big fan. In my quest to try new foods I decided to make this. Knowing my kids probably wouldn't eat it, I cooked up some regular spaghetti too. This turned out to be a wise choice. The recipe made plenty of sauce, which both my husband and I enjoyed. It was very different and flavorful with the olives, wine, and capers. I ended up realizing that I'm not a big fan of spaghetti squash. Hey, I'm a carb lover. I want the real thing! So, the squash ended up being an appetizer to my big bowl of regular spaghetti with the sauce over it. Also to note, this is NOT a quick weeknight dinner. The squash was cooked for 90 minutes and after putting the sauce together, that needs to simmer for 30 minutes.
Cooking Light, October 2000
Yield: 6 servings (1 cup squash, 3/4 cup sauce, 1 tablespoon topping)
1 spaghetti squash (about 3 1/4 pounds)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup minced fresh onion
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
Dash of crushed red pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced and divided
1 cup dry red wine
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup coarsely chopped pitted kalamata olives
1 tablespoon capers
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 375°.
Pierce squash with a fork. Place squash on a baking sheet; bake at 375° for 1 1/2 hours or until tender. Cool. Cut squash in half lengthwise; discard seeds. Scrape inside of squash with a fork to remove spaghetti-like strands to measure 6 cups. Keep warm.
While squash is baking, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, oregano, thyme, bay leaves, and red pepper; sauté 5 minutes. Add 2 minced garlic cloves, wine, and the next 6 ingredients (wine through tomatoes); bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until thick (about 30 minutes). Discard bay leaves. Serve sauce over squash.
Combine 1 minced garlic clove, Parmesan cheese, and parsley. Sprinkle over each serving.
Family Rating: So-so.