I MADE MY GLUTEN-FREE PARTNER a fabulous autumn dinner last night…steamed spaghetti squash, colorful piperade, and freshly-grated Parmesan, all served on a bed of sliced polenta rounds. Although low in fat, this easy vegetarian dish contains a wealth of flavor that satisfies both body and soul:
Spaghetti Squash Piperade
Ingredients for 4 servings
One large spaghetti squash
2 cups Piperade
Polenta – (you can buy this already made in the health-food section of your supermarket)
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Spaghetti Squash – pierce the skin deeply about 8 times with a sharp knife. Then place in a shallow glass dish and microwave on high for exactly 20 minutes. Let rest for an additional 10 minutes.
Piperade – prepare according to these directions. Or, if you keep this fragrant brew in your freezer, as I do, simply decant and reheat in a skillet set over low heat.
Assembling – Slice the squash lengthwise in half (a serrated knife is helpful), and spoon out seeds and dark-colored fibers from each half. Then scrape, with a fork, the spaghetti-like strands into a bowl. Toss with a Tbs of olive oil, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
To Plate – Arrange 3 or 4 slices of polenta on each plate, and top with a mound of squash. Top with piperade and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
Now, were I to serve this dish for a dinner party, as my partner suggested, here’s how I’d avoid being kitchen-bound when guests arrive: 30 minutes before serving-time, I’d stick the already-prepared plates in a 200 degree oven. Then, at serving time, I’d simply bring the plates from oven to table.
We enjoyed an Australian shiraz (“Yellowtail”) with this meal last night.
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