Spaghetti Squash with Bolognese
Why we love it:
- 1 Yellow Onion (small dice)
- 3 cloves Garlic (minced)
- 1 Carrot
- 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Tomato Paste
- 1 Tablespoon Dried Oregano
- 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1 pound Ground Beef
- 1 Spaghetti Squash
- 1⁄2 cup Red Wine (or white wine - both optional)
- 1 28-ounce can Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 cup Parmesan Cheese
Finely dice the onion and mince the garlic. Wash and dice the carrot - you really don’t need to peel it!
Use a heavy pot with a wide bottom, over medium high heat. The wide base will help the sauce cook and concentrate the flavors more quickly. Add half of the olive oil followed by the onion, carrot, and garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes until fragrant and gently sizzling.
2. TOMATO PASTE
Add the tomato paste, oregano and salt. Stir it into the veggies and make sure it comes in contact with the bottom of the pan for 1 minute. This will actually cook the flavor of the paste which is important.
Add the ground beef to the pan and break it up. Continue cooking and breaking up into small pieces. You may prefer to use a potato masher or just keep working it with a wooden spoon.
After about 5-6 minutes, the meat should be mostly browned and in small pieces.
4. PREP SQUASH
While waiting for the meat, you can address the squash. Slice off the stem end, then cut it in half.
Use a sharp edged spoon to scoop out the seeds and stringy guts (which can be saved in the fridge or freezer for veggie stock!).
5. WINE + TOMATOES
If using, add the wine. Then add the tomatoes. (If opting out of wine, just skip it and add the tomatoes). Turn the heat to high and cover it. Bring it to a steady simmer. Once simmering, stir well and uncover the pot. Turn heat down to medium and it should retain a slow, gentle simmer this way.
Cook for 20 minutes. If you have longer, by all means, simmer for up to 40 minutes but there’s no need to.
6. MICROWAVE THE SQUASH
Place the squash halves cut side down in a glass casserole dish. Fill with 1-1.5 inches of water to come up the edges of the squash. Power on high for 15 minutes in the microwave.
Check it by piercing with a knife, if should be tender. If not, return for 3-5 more minutes.
7. SHRED SQUASH
Carefully remove from the microwave. Turn it out of the hot water and dish, it’s helpful to cradle it in a clean towel. Use a fork to separate the strings. Scrape them into a large bowl and season with the remaining olive oil, a pinch of salt, and pepper to taste.
Serve squash in large bowls and top generously with sauce and parmesan cheese to taste.
Alternatively, you could toss it all together but the extra sauce is great on a roll (think sloppy joe) or can be frozen for later. Also, the color of the squash vs. the sauce looks beautiful when it’s not completely combined.