DISH: Spaghetti Squash with Tomatoes and Ricotta
TYPE: Dinner for friends
DIETARY RESTRICTION: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Real spaghetti presents some issues for my gluten-free lifestyle, and unfortunately, my boyfriend Josh is getting a little sick of the fake stuff. So I recently started thinking about Jordana’s spaghetti squash—her specialty, topped with tomato sauce and ricotta like real spaghetti—as my new solution to pasta cravings.
See, Jordana is kind of the weak cooking link at Mag Club. But there was one Mag Club, about a year ago I’d say, when Jordana served us an unprecedented homemade dish. And of the three years’ worth of dishes we’ve consumed, it was one of the more memorable. It was delicious, of course, but the dish sticks with me because a) it was cooked by Jordana, and b) it was spaghetti squash, something that, at the time, I had never cooked myself.
If it was easy enough for her to approach, then it also just might be the ultimate side dish for this site. I emailed her for the recipe, and received in return a rather hilarious interpretation, including gem-like tips “I put the damn thing in the oven with some holes poked in it,” and “watery spaghetti squash is nasty!!”
With Jordana’s guidance, to use a “pyrex glassy thingy” and other instructions, the squash turned out perfect, and just as good as a weeknight veggie, gluten-free meal alone as it was shared with our group of besties.
Phoebe is the co-founder of Small Kitchen College and Big Girls, Small Kitchen.
Jordana’s Baked Spaghetti Squash with Tomato and Ricotta
Makes 2 servings
1 large spaghetti squash
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup tomato sauce
½ cup ricotta
Preheat the oven 375°F.
Place the spaghetti squash on a baking sheet. Pierce it on all sides with a knife. Bake in the oven for about an hour, or until easily pieced with a knife.
Allow to cool enough to touch. Then cut the squash in half and spoon out the seeds and pulp. Using a fork, scrape out the spaghetti squash, separating the strands as you go. It should yield about 2-4 cups.
Place the spaghetti squash in a bundle of dish towels (or a kitchen towel), and squeeze out some of the moisture (as Jor says, no one likes soggy spaghetti!!). Place in a mixing bowl, then toss together with the salt and tomato sauce. Add half of the ricotta and gently toss until the ricotta is just slightly broken up but not totally incorporated. Pour the squash into a small casserole dish or oven-safe bowl, dot with the remaining ricotta, and bake under the broiler until browned on top, about 5 minutes.
Serve immediately, or allow to cool, pack up, and take to your next potluck. Reheat in the oven on site.