By: Helena Stallings, Culinary Arts Student
Many culinary professionals struggle to find good tasting gluten free options for their customers, but I have had more success finding new takes on those dishes to give my gluten free friends the same satisfaction. Now that winter squashes are coming into season a great gluten free option is to use roasted spaghetti squash in any dish that calls for noodles. During my culinary curriculum at Escoffier I learned that the best method to cut a spaghetti squash is by starting in the middle. Insert the tip of your knife into the center of the squash and cut down through the bottom. Then rotate the squash and cut down the other side. Spaghetti squash have a very thick skin and it is easy to cut yourself, so be careful. When your squash is cut in two, scoop out the seeds with a spoon. In a deep pan, place the squash cut side down and pour in enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. Roast the squash in a 400 degree oven for 30-45 minutes and when the squash is fork tender, it is done. After letting the squash cool for a few minutes, insert a fork into the meat of the squash and pull against the grain to achieve the spaghetti look. This is a great product to use for a gluten free baked ziti dish or to simply serve tossed in a garlic butter sauce.
Roasted Spaghetti Squash Recipe:
Preheat the oven to 400F
Cut the squash in half from the top to the bottom. This can be a bit of a struggle so use a very sharp knife and just work slowly as not to hurt yourself!
Once cut in half, use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and the stringy-like parts of the flesh. Be sure to not disturb the meat as much as possible. Discard what you scooped out.
Place the squash in a roasting pan with the cut side down. Pour in enough water to cover the bottom of the pan. Place in the oven and cook for about 30-45 minutes or until meat is fork tender.
When done, use a fork to gently remove the noodle like strands. Hint: Rake your fork in the same direction the strands are going for best removal.
Serve with some sautéed butter and garlic or a spoonful of your favorite spaghetti squash for a healthy and delicious dinner idea.