Spaghetti Squash and Bolognese Sauce

Who knew spaghetti squash was such a rare commodity in London.  While at Broadway market today I saw one and only on, spaghetti squash.  When I asked the vendor if I could purchase it, he said, “sure, we’ve been trying to sell this one for a few weeks, it’s our last one.”  To which I thought, not exactly what I was hoping to hear, visions of old squash running through my mind, but said to the vendor, “I’ll take it.”

Everyone seems to be blogging about spaghetti squash right now.   Ree, over at PioneerWoman recently posted a great recipe with maple syrup and shallots.  It’s definitely seasonal and makes for an unusual main dish.  It’s easy to cook and looks really neat!  Basically, spaghetti squash is awesome!
Spaghetti Squash

To cook my spaghetti squash, I turned the oven on to 200C (350F) and put the squash in the oven.  Whole.  And left it there.  45 minutes later I opened the oven, removed the squash, cut it in half, and removed the seeds.  Next, my favourite part, taking a fork, I pulled the squash flesh away from the rind.  What happened?  Magic!  The squash flesh turned into ribbons of spaghetti!  Awesome.  Just plain awesome.  And then I added bolognese sauce.

he was a little over-done, I neglected him while making the bolognese sauce

how cool is spaghetti squash?!!

Making tomato sauce can be kind of a surprise.  You can start with the basic ingredients, but then mix it up with different herbs and spices.  This time around I stuck with a basic bolognese inspired by Giada De Laurentiis.  From “Everyday Italian” her simple bolognese sauce is a great base on which to build other flavours.

sweat those onions

beef has browned, tomatoes have gone in, just before I blitzed the whole thing with an immersion blender

all together now

Bolognese Sauce – Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

a couple of splashes of olive oil
1 onion, minced
a couple of garlic cloves
1 carrot, peeled and minced
1 leek, minced
1 pound ground beef
1 28 ounce can of tomatoes
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp dried basil
salt and pepper
1/4 c grated pectorino romano cheese

Pour a couple glugs of olive oil into a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion, garlic and leeks sauteing until translucent.  Add the carrot and saute for another 5 minutes.  Add the ground beef, browning until the beef is no longer pink.  Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, and salt and pepper.  Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens.  Add the cheese, check your seasoning again and then serve!   I use whole tomatoes and then blitz the sauce with an immersion blender.  I don’t like big chunks of tomato but do like to start with whole tomatoes.  What can I say, I’m picky.

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