The Delicious Mystery of Spaghetti Squash

My mother-in-law introduced me to spaghetti squash. First I turned my nose up thinking it was a vegetarian pasta dish. Then she pulled an oven dish with these giant pear shaped gourds. It was an oven baked squash! Still I did not know how to eat it until I watched her scrape it with a fork and the insides started to resemble spaghetti noodles. How cool is that. So I had to do some research on them so I can grow some from my garden.

According to Wikinfo, Natives of North America would call it “askutasquash” a Naraganset word, later to be called by colonist “isquotersquash” then shorten down to just squash. Spaghetti squash is in the winter squash family and because they last so long in cold storage they’re also known as a “keeper”. The squashes hard rind protects it from moisture. You can keep them at room temperature for a month but anything longer they should be stored at around 50 degrees.

The squash takes 60 to 90 days to mature. The skin will have a slight yellow tint as they ripen and you’ll be able to pierce the skin with your fingernail. As it ripens you should place straw underneath so the squash does not rot. Place straw underneath the squash or place them on top of a pot so that the underside doesn’t rot. Harvest your squash and invite friends and family over for a wonderful dinner. If you don’t have a green thumb and you don’t want to wait 90 days, then your local grocery store will carry them and you would want to pick the ones that seem large for their size with a hard skin and no soft spots or cuts.

The basic method of cooking spaghetti squash is to cut it in half lengthwise. Scoop the seed out and place to the side for future crops. At 350° bake the cut squash for 30 to 45 minutes on a cookie sheet or place face down in a little water on the stove top. The best part is there are so many recipes you can use. For example, Bacon Spaghetti Squash, southwestern Spaghetti Squash, Spicy Spaghetti Squash or my personal favorite is to bake it with some butter and a little fresh grated parmesan cheese and I would just scrape it and enjoy it. The best part is that 4 ounce serving of spaghetti squash has only 37 calories. So when your mother-in-law asks you to try something new don’t be afraid. It just might be good for you.

Republished by Blog Post Promoter