I was browsing the produce section of my local Publix the other day and happened upon the squash table. I’ve been introduced to the Squash Family – Butternut, Acorn, Spaghetti -but I can’t seem to place the shape with the name. (I’m really bad with names & faces, too. I’m sure there’s some psychological reason for this, but let’s not dwell on my faults.) Yes, I’m that person in the squash aisle, reading squash name tags to see which is which and then googling recipes. It’s exhausting.
Now, I’m not complete strangers with the Squashes. I’ve met Zucchini and Yellow Squash, such a cute couple! And I’m now BFF’s with Spaghetti Squash since our Creamy Spaghetti Squash Soup adventure. But I’m still trying to get to know the others. Today, I’m going with my BFF again and using Spaghetti Squash.
Lately, I’ve been craving a Chipotle salad bowl and started thinking about how I could make one at home. After working with Spaghetti Squash, I had an epiphany. What if I substitute spaghetti squash for the rice? It would cut the calorie count substantially and I could even use the outer shell as the bowl. And that, my friends, is how a recipe is born!
- 1 Medium Spaghetti squash
- 1 Red and yellow peppers, sliced
- 1 Red onion, sliced
- 15oz canned corn
- 15oz canned black beans
- 1 tsp cumin
- Salt & pepper
- 1/2 cup salsa
- 1/2 cup non-dairy cheese
- 1/4 Avocado, chopped
- Fresh cilantro
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Cut the stem off of spaghetti squash then cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds with spoon. (The seeds can be cleaned and toasted for a yummy snack.) Brush a little water along the edges of squash and place cut-side down on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 40 minutes or until you can pierce the squash easily with a fork.
- While the squash is baking, mix up the filling. In skillet add onion, peppers and a tablespoon of water and sauté until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add corn, black beans, cumin, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to simmer.
- After the squash has cooled enough to handle, use a fork to gently remove the “spaghetti” strands from the inside of the squash. Try to retain the shape of the skin because you will be putting the squash back in. Add “spaghetti” to the skillet and stir.
- Spoon filling into squash skins and top with salsa and non-dairy cheese.
- Place back in the oven until the cheese is melted and the mixture is hot, about 10 minutes.
- Top with avocado and cilantro.
Word of the Day: Extremophile – def. an organism that lives under extreme environmental conditions (as in a hot spring or ice cap)
OK, people, work with me here. This word is hard to use in general blog conversation. But I’ll try. Here goes… If you want to try to grow your own squash, it’s important to remember that the squash family does not belong to the extremophile family, in fact, they are quite susceptible to extreme temperatures. (Not bad, right?)