Monday, March 8, 2010

Spaghetti Squash Sprout Sauté with Tomato Coulis

How much fun is spaghetti squash? Between scooping out its stringy flesh and eating it like faux pasta, I don’t know which part I like more! It’s a great source of complex carbs with fewer calories than pasta and more vitamins than a bleached noodle to boot. I’ve been hanging onto this squash for a month now waiting for some inspiration to strike, but it’s mostly been sitting there dormant among the potatoes and garlic. Once again in preparation to travel and looking to use what I have instead of making a grocery run (does anyone really know how hard it is for me not to go to the food store?), I finally spotted my bumpy yellow friend and decided it was time.

Taking stock through my kitchen, I eyed a few crinkly orbs in the produce drawer. There was absolutely no way I was going to take even a slight risk of those brussel sprouts going bad while I was gone. Too much love for my cruciferous friends… I wanted to include them somehow. A recipe search led me to a very simple yet tantalizing dish. Though I tend to overcomplicate recipes at times because I can’t stop ideas from bouncing around in my head while I’m in the kitchen, the sound of a simple sauté involving garlic and crushed red pepper sounded superb. Sometimes I skip over those recipes because they sound too rudimentary. But who am I to sneeze at the loveliest of spice-herb combinations?

Ok so this might be a shot at my own creative ego - this recipe is not only based but essentially the same as a wonderful recipe by Anne Burrell listed on the Food Network site. While I deviated some from her recipe, it pains me to think I actually have to cite it for fear of copyright infringement. Oh well. While she adds cilantro, I have my own twist by adding a fresh and light coulis as a drizzle over this fabulous side dish. It is absolutely delish without the coulis as I discovered today while making this again to use of the rest of my spaghetti squash, but the sauce could also be tweaked as you like by adding any herb of your choice. This is definitely omnivore tested and approved.

Spaghetti Squash Sprout Sauté with Tomato Coulis
Serves: 2
Cook Time: 10 minutes


For the Squash Sauté
1 Medium spaghetti squash, cut in half and seeds removed
½ T. Olive oil
3-4 Large garlic cloves, minced
¼ - ½ tsp Crushed red pepper
8-10 Brussel sprouts, sliced 1/8” inch thick
½ tsp Salt
Pepper to taste

For the Coulis
2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
2 tsp Red wine vinegar
½ tsp Oregano or another dried herb of personal preference
Salt to taste


For the Squash Sauté
Preheat oven to 400ºF. Fill a roasting pan or glass baking dish with about 1” water. Place the squash in flesh side down and cover. Bake 40 minutes or until squash is tender and pulls easily away from skin. Alternately, microwave squash for 6 minutes on high or until tender. Scoop out squash and divide in half. Set one half aside for use now and refrigerate the other half for tomorrow when you decide to make this again because it’s so fast and delicious.

Heat olive oil over medium low heat in a skillet. Sauté garlic and red pepper until garlic becomes golden, being careful not to burn. Add brussel sprouts and salt and toss well in pan making sure they are coated well in garlic. Increase heat to medium high and cook sprouts until brown, about 3-4 minutes. Add spaghetti squash, another little pinch of salt and pepper to taste. Cook until mixture is warm and brussel sprouts are cooked to your liking. Remove from pan and set aside in serving bowl. Turn heat off, but keep pan warm for the coulis.

For the Coulis
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until completely smooth. Taste the sauce to be sure it is salted to your preference. Pour the sauce in the warm pan, scraping off any remaining squash and/or garlic bits. Remove from heat and set aside in a small bowl.

To Serve
Divide squash into two bowls and drizzle with coulis. Add a few shakes of nutritional yeast if you’re feeling ambition or a couple crushed walnuts. Enjoy!

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