Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Spaghetti Squash au Gratin

I still had some cooked spaghetti squash left, so it went into this casserole. Very nice! You could serve it as a side dish with plainly cooked fish or chicken, but it's rich enough to make a good vegetarian main dish as well, which is how we had it. A green salad or steamed green vegetable will complete the meal. 

4 to 6 servings
1 hour prep time, plus 1 hour to pre-cook the squash,
not including cooling time

Spaghetti Squash au Gratin

4 cups cooked, loosened spaghetti squash strands
8 to 12 button mushrooms
2 large shallots
2 large cloves of garlic
1/4 cup chopped dried tomatoes
2 tablespoons mild vegetable oil
1 teaspoon rubbed basil
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 teaspoons arrowroot or cornstarch
salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
140 grams (5 ish ounces) chevre (soft goat cheese)
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
1 teaspoon butter

Pierce the spaghetti squash with a fork, and roast it at 350°F (on a tray) for about hour, until soft. Let cool, then cut in half and discard the seeds. Loosen the strands of squash from the shell with a fork, and discard the shell.

Preheat the ovent to 350°F. Wash, trim and slice the mushrooms. Peel and dice the shallots. Peel and mince the garlic. Chop the tomatoes.

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Cook the mushrooms and shallots until quite soft and slightly browned, stirring regularly. Add the minced garlic and basil, and cook for a minute or so longer. Add the dried tomatoes and most of the chicken stock. Mix the arrowroot in with the remaining chicken stock, and when the vegetables have simmered for a few minutes and the tomatoes look softened, stir in the remaining stock with the cornstarch. Season with salt and pepper to taste; the amount of salt will be affected by whether your chicken stock is already salted or not. Mix in the chevre, until it is completely dissolved.

Oil a 2 quart casserole dish (8" x 11" baking dish). Mix the spaghetti squash with the sauce and spread it in the prepared pan. Sprinkle it with the breadcrumbs and dot with the butter. Bake for about 45 minutes, until browned and bubbly around the edges.

Last year at this time I made Crisp Winter Salad with Cottage Cheese Dressing.

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