Last night was one of those nights.
Those nights when I cook two dinners.
My mom was nice enough to buy me a spaghetti squash on Sunday and I just couldn’t wait to use it since they pretty much are the best things ever. However, I knew for a fact that my police officer would not be on the spaghetti squash bandwagon. He really isn’t on any type of vegetable bandwagon ever. Maybe if there was a green bean bandwagon he would be all over it, but squash and other ‘weird’ (you know how he thinks everything I make is ‘weird) things are not really his forte.
So, there I was. Knowing that I was going to make my spaghetti squash into something wonderful. Knowing that I was going to have to bask in all of its glory alone. Not that this was a true problem. I mean, the less people I have to feed my squash to, the more squash I get to eat myself. That’s right, Kelly, just keep looking for the silver linings.
I thought about pleading my case in front of my officer and really trying to sell him on the dinner. I was going to talk it up. Make it seem like he would be missing out on the most delicious thing of his life. I was going to emphasize just how much it looked like spaghetti and how easily it can be substituted for pasta. I mean, he likes pasta, so that would have been a totally valid argument. I was going to tell him how healthy it is and that it would provide him with all kinds of energy for when he’s out there in the streets fighting those bad guys. I was even thinking about just telling him it was new kind of pasta I was trying.
Then, I realized that it just wasn’t going to work. I just can’t lie to him. There was no way that I was going to present him with a vegetable that looked like worms spaghetti and get him to eat it. I gave up. I’m not a very good salesman. Never have been. Never will be.
Good thing my job is to sell insurance. Makes sense, right?
My night was easy-peasy since I didn’t have to work so hard on my little veggie scam. I threw my squash together with some olives, red peppers, and capers and enjoyed every last bite of my dinner. I threw some real pasta in a pot and threw some of my Gram’s spaghetti sauce over it and my officer enjoyed every last bite of his dinner.
Mediterranean Spaghetti Squash
1 large spaghetti squash
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 large red bell pepper, chopped into large pieces
8-10 large Kalamata olives, pitted and quartered
2 teaspoons capers
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
black pepper, to taste
1/8 cup crumbled feta cheese
Preheat oven to 375.
Slice spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise. In a large baking dish, place both pieces of squash cut-side down. Fill the dish with about 1/2-inch of water until it just covers the bottom of the squash halves. Cover with foil and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until squash is easily pierced with a knife or fork. Flip squash halves over and cover with foil and return to oven to bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until squash is very tender.
While squash is baking, add olive oil and garlic to large pan and sauté 1-2 minutes. Add bell pepper pieces and sauté an additional 4-5 minutes, or until peppers are crisp-tender. Add in olives, capers, thyme, and black pepper, reduce heat, and keep warm until squash is ready.
When squash is finished, remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. Scoop out the seeds and pulp from the center and discard. Using a fork, pull the strands of squash away from the peel and place squash in the pan with the pepper mixture. Return the pan to medium heat, stir until squash and pepper mixture is combined and heated through.
Sprinkle with feta cheese and serve hot.
Yield: 2 servings
Sometimes, you just have to agree to disagree. And, babe, as always, if you’re reading this, I would never lie to you about you are eating…I mean that.
Have you ever lied to someone about what was in a dish just so they would try it?