Spaghetti Squash “Pasta” Bake

It’s 61 degrees today in Brooklyn. In January. Ummm, oookaaaay. My apartment is a tad bit warm from roasting the spaghetti squash and then baking the “pasta” dish. But, hey, my dinner is done and I just need to reheat it later on this evening. I love it when a plan comes together. Also, I realized that there is a better way to cook spaghetti squash. My friend, Molly and I were just talking yesterday about struggling to cut the squash in half and how comical it was. Newsflash: pierce squash all over with a fork and cook in the microwave for 12-15 minutes, or, in a baking dish in the oven at 400 degrees for 60 minutes. SO. Much. Easier this way! Also, I used my favorite jarred Muir Glen pasta sauce because it’s Sunday and I’m feeling a little lazy.

  • 1 cooked spaghetti squash
  • 1/2 the jar of pasta sauce
  • 1/2C panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2C (or more) of grated pecorino
  • Italian herb blend
  • Crushed red pepper

Let the cooked squash cool (or be a doofus and burn your hand like I did earlier), then use a spoon to scoop out the innards and seeds, discard those. Then, use a fork to scrape out the squash, add it to a large mixing bowl. Add the sauce and stir until combined. Add mixture to an 8×8 baking dish. Combine the breadcrumbs, cheese and herbs, sprinkle on top of the spaghetti squash mixture. I added a bit more pecorino romanao cheese too Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes, or, until the topping is browned and bit crispy.

Shredded, Roasted Brussels with Tiny Pasta and Cheeses

I hate to say it, but I think I’m over winter vegetables. Don’t get me wrong, I love meals with simple roasted root vegetables with olive oil and garlic, but, I seriously crave fresh Summer tomatoes and grilled corn…and sugar snap peas… I do enjoy all seasons, but I’m ready to end this Winter chapter and move on. I am so looking forward to seeing the trees bud and daffodils and lillies…Ok, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Tonight’s dinner. I had some Brussels sprouts in my fridge that needed to be used. I was going to make a raw, slivered salad with a light honey dijon, white balsamic vinegar dressing, but decided against it and made something up instead. I had some shallots, tiny pasta shells, breadcrumbs, pecorino and Bulgarian feta. So, I mixed it all together in a 9×13 baking dish and roasted it for about 45 min, or until the Brussels were crispy. I added the chopped almonds last minute (read: after I put the dish in the oven for 5 minutes) and I’m glad I did because they gave the dish a nice crunch. I have to say, it was pretty freaking delicious and super simple. Mind you, I didn’t really measure anything, so, just eyeball the ingredients until you’re satisfied with how it comes together.

  • 1 bag/container of Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced
  • 1- 1 1/2c. tiny pasta shells cooked, al dente
  • 1 medium shallot, sliced
  • olive oil
  • 1/3c. bread crumbs
  • 1/3C shredded Pecorino cheese
  • Handful of crumbled Bulgarian feta
  • Handful of chopped almonds (or, hazelnuts if you have them)
  • Crushed red pepper
  • Salt/pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cook pasta until al dente, drain. Wash, trim and thinly slice the Brussels sprouts, add both to the 9×13 baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil. (You can also spray the baking dish with cooking spray). Add bread crumbs (I used the Progresso Italian ones rather than the Panko breadcrumbs I also had on hand), shallots, almonds, shredded pecorino and feta. You can stir it up at this point if you choose. Bake at 400 for about 35-45 minutes, or until the Brussels sprouts are browned. I prefer them a bit crispy. I had the meal with a nice, crisp white wine (Grüner). Hey, it was a long work day. Oof. I’m sure there are typos above.