Monday, January 30, 2012

Spaghetti Squash Casserole

On Friday night, my boyfriend and I decided to try something new and make "Spaghetti Squash Casserole with Ricotta and Spinach" courtesy of Real Simple magazine. I felt like it deserved to be blogged about because spaghetti squash was something I had never eaten, or even seen, before.

[You can find the original recipe from Real Simple here.]

I was a little nervous about finding a spaghetti squash in the first place, and when we went to the grocery store to buy ingredients, they didn't even have it. . We found it in another store, but it wasn't even labeled and they had only TWO! Phew, close call.

First, we mixed the ricotta, egg, spinach, garlic, nutmeg, and salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. It calls for 4 cups of chopped spinach. FOUR CUPS! Do you know how long it takes to chop FOUR CUPS of spinach? Forever, that's how long.

 We mixed until it looked like this:

 Next, the recipe says to cook the squash in the oven for 50 minutes. But really, who has that much time? So we nuked it in the microwave (don't worry, Real Simple said it was okay) for about 15 minutes.

The (halved) squash
 After the spaghetti squash was nice and tender, we scraped the guts into the bowl with the spinach and ricotta mixture very gently. Brenden was a stickler for preserving the strings, and it turned out alright.

Now I know why it's called spaghetti squash...
 Once it was all combined, we plopped it in a casserole dish. The recipe says to use an 8-inch square, but the closest to that I had was an 11 x 7 and it filled it nicely. (Don't bother with the traditional 9 x 13, that's way too big).

 We sprinkled mozzarella over it and baked it at 400 for 20-ish minutes, and let it cool so the cheese could solidify.

It turned out to be delicious, even though Brenden was worried about a meatless meal (psh, men.) And we even had enough for leftovers! I'll definitely be making this one again.

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