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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Veggie Pasta - Spaghetti Squash with an Acorn Squash Cream Sauce

Holy squash batman! Yesterday while at Winco I decided to pick up a spaghetti squash knowing that it would make a tasty pasta dish without the actual pasta. Little did I know that later in the day my husband's grandpa would bless us with an abundance of acorn squash as well. As I was browsing through squash recipes I saw an idea for a squash cream sauce and thought why not combine squash pasta with a squash sauce? Overkill...maybe, but I thought it was worth a shot. Let me walk you through what I did and how it turned out.

I started by roasting the acorn squash. Just cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, place flesh side down on a greased baking sheet, and bake at 425 degrees for about 45 minutes. While you are at it, roast those seeds! I just separate them from the stringy stuff, rinse and dry them off, toss with a bit of olive oil and salt and put on the same baking sheet as the squash. These will be done much quicker (check around 15 to 20 minutes) so you will want to pull them out and then keep the squash going. Mine went for about 25 and got a little dark but we don't mind them that way:

Once the squash is done roasting and cool enough to touch, scoop out the innards and place in the food processor along with 4 oz of softened cream cheese, 1 clove of garlic, 2 Tbsp of Parmesan, basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Start whirling them all together while streaming in some milk. Start with 1/4 cup and keep adding until you get the consistency you desire. Less milk leaves a thicker sauce that actually would be great as a dip or work well on a heartier pasta. More milk will thin it out and make it more appropriate for something delicate like spaghetti squash. I made this earlier in the day so my evening would go smoother so I left it on the thicker side to start knowing I could add more milk as I reheated it later on. {Want to go lighter on the dairy and the calories? Sub vegetable stock for all or part of the milk}

When dinner time got closer I roasted the spaghetti squash much in the same way as the acorn squash. Included the seeds in this batch as well because the little people ate all of the ones from the first squash already!

Used a fork to shred the squash into "spaghetti" and topped with the rewarmed sauce that I thinned with a little more milk and some vegetable stock.

Verdict - It was okay. Why am I sharing it then? The sauce was really, really good. I just think I am not totally a fan of the two squashes together...probably overkill for me. But if you LOVE squash this may be for you. I would love to try this on regular pasta and mix in some sausage and mushroom to the finished product. Either way the sauce will definitely be made again. Hope you enjoy some variation of this! Want to know what I did with the other half of the acorn squash? Come back tomorrow and I'll share another recipe.

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