As we head into fall, the farmers markets are starting to transition from late summer produce, like corn, tomatoes, and eggplants to fall squashes and pumpkins. This presents a unique window of opportunity to create a cross-seasonal dish like this delicious Spaghetti Squash al Pomodoro that will help you ease into autumn.
In case you’ve never had it, spaghetti squash is a type of pumpkin with stringy flesh that shreds when cooked, into long strands that look a bit like spaghetti. I’d be lying if I told you it was a dead ringer for the pasta, but eating it is reminiscent of pasta and to be quite honest, I think I may actually like it better than the wheat-based original.
If the season for really great vine-ripened tomatoes has passed in your area, you can still make this dish using canned tomatoes. Just use my basic tomato sauce recipe, which should give you just enough sauce for one spaghetti squash.
While peeling the tomatoes does take a bit of work, it results in a sauce free of tough skins which is why I think it’s worth the extra bit of effort. You can read more about how to peel tomatoes on my tutorial.
Spaghetti Squash al Pomodoro
- 3.75 pound spaghetti squash
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 7 ounces onion (1 onion, finely diced)
- 0.6 ounces garlic ( 3 large clove)
- 2.5 pounds tomatoes (peeled, and chopped)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 0.7 ounces basil (julienned)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Cut the spaghetti squash in half and scrape out the seeds and pith with a spoon. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil on the cut edges of both halves of squash. Place the squash cut-side down on a parchment or silicon lined baking sheet and place in the oven. Bake until the squash is tender (about 1 hour).
- While the squash is baking, prepare the sauce by adding 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a frying pan along with the onions and garlic. Place the pan over medium-high heat and fry the onions and garlic until they start to brown and are very fragrant.
- Add the tomatoes and salt and simmer until the sauce is very thick, and a little sweet. If your tomatoes weren't very ripe and your sauce is too tart, you can add a bit of sugar to balance it out.
- When the squash is done, remove it from the oven and let it cool enough to handle. Use a fork to shred long strands of squash from side to side.
- Add the shredded spaghetti squash to the tomato sauce along with the basil and stir to coat evenly. Adjust salt to taste and serve.
Yield: 4 servings
Marc Matsumoto is a culinary consultant and recipe repairman who shares his passion for good food through his website norecipes.com. For Marc, food is a life long journey of exploration, discovery and experimentation and he shares his escapades through his blog in the hopes that he inspires others to find their own culinary adventures. Marcs been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today, and has made multiple appearances on NPR and the Food Network.