amazing zucchini spaghetti squash

Once upon a time many decades ago B.A. (before ani), bob tried some spaghetti squash recipe, very simple, boring, and unmemorable. Enough to reduce interest in this unusual squash variety below the threshhold for action. For a long time.

Then Ani saw this recipe by Sara Moulton, one of our favorite TV chefs recently partnering with another old friend Chris at Milk Street radio to offer free advice to callers, how quaint. They seem to have a rather clever personality interplay on air. We catch them by chance in the car on NRP. But this recipe was from Sara's Weeknight Meals. Actually seen on the weekend when Isgouhi is with us and food TV is a frequent screen filler.

Given his history with the veggie,  bob was a little skeptical the result would blow his socks off, but indeed this recipe is just spectacular. We both raved over it, with unexpected joy. Maybe you might too. It's worth a trial run, no?

There is as much if not more zucchini in this lineup, so we thought it deserved co-billing in the title. We love zucchini and are always looking for new ways to use them. Goat cheese is perhaps the magic ingredient that gives it that something extra that impresses the palette, but that would mean a much longer name for the recipe. Amazing stays. Think the Beetles song "Baby, I'm Amazed." Those of you old timers who remember those guys.

ingredients

1 1/2 lbs zucchini
3/4 t kosher salt
one 3- 3 1/2 lb spaghetti squash
1 1/2 c sliced onion
2 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 c vegetable broth
2 T finely chopped fresh sage, plus sage sprigs for garnish
4 oz fresh goat cheese, crumbled
 1 oz grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus extra for garnish
salt and pepper to taste ("adjust the spices")
1/3 c toasted pine nuts

instructions

  1. Toast the pine nuts and set aside. 
  2. Grate the zucchini, using the grating disk of a food processor to reduce the effort if possible. We did. Toss into a bowl with the salt and let sit 20 minutes to extract the excess moisture.
  3. Jam 3 or 4 holes in the spaghetti squash (with an ice pick?) so it won't explode in the microwave on high for 5 minutes.
  4. After microwaving cut this squash in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds and microwave again on high for 5 minutes or until the strands of squash inards easily release from the hull when you scrape them out but wait on that last step.
  5. In the meantime saute the onion in olive oil in a large nonstick skillet for about 8minutes until softened and golden.
  6. Squeeze a handful of zucchini at a time tightly to remove the moisture and toss into the onion skillet and cook over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Transfer the mix to a bowl, but keep the skillet on stand by.
  7. By now the spaghetti squash should have cooled enough to handle so scoop out all the strands (the "spaghetti"!)  to have about 4.5 cups of product.
  8. Add the vegetable broth, sage and goat cheese to the skillet and bring to a boil, whisking to mix up the ingredients.
  9. Dump in the spaghetti strands and simmer covered for about 5 minutes until the squash is tender.
  10. Dump in the zucchini, parmigiano and salt and pepper and mix them up, then cook about a minute or so to heat them through.
  11. Transfer to your serving bowl (or individual serving bowls), grate some additional parmigiano over it, then  top with the pine nuts and garnish with the sage.
  12. Eat immediately.

notes

  1. Sara Moulton, Spaghetti squash with creamy goat cheese sauce.
  2. Leftovers lost the magic, eat it up on the first night to avoid disappointment.
  3. Illustrations available.
spaghettisquash.htm: 8-nov-2021 [what, ME cook? © 1984 dr bob enterprises]