Believe it or not, one of our favorite restaurants in Germany was not German food, it was Italian. It just happened to be right down the street from our house, which made it super convenient. Their menu was great, there wasn’t anything I didn’t like. Their gnocchi in gorgonzola cream sauce is to die for. I probably would never attempt it on my own, I would faint at the calorie load. Luckily, they don’t care about that there and would never think of posting calorie counts.
We ordered something different each time we went, and we definitely knew the menu inside and out. One of my daughter’s favorite dishes was the pasta aglio e olio, or pasta with garlic and olive oil. It was simple, delicious and light.
I make it every once in a while with angel hair pasta, which seems to lighten up the taste even more, but I wanted to see how it would taste with a spaghetti squash. Spaghetti squash popularity peaked a few years back as a replacement for pasta. I think the hype has died down since them. You see, there is nothing about it that reminds me of pasta. This is probably why some people felt a little duped. The taste and texture, for me, do not make it a legitimate substitute for pasta.
Spaghetti squash is a vegetable and I firmly believe it lacks a little in the taste department. That’s not to say it doesn’t taste good, but it doesn’t have a lot of flavor. It needs flavor added. It needs strong flavor.
I’ve eaten spaghetti squash with marinara, and even more with pesto (which is delicious by the way), so I thought garlic, olive oil, and parmesan would take this ho-hum vegetable to new heights. I was right.
I roasted the spaghetti squash first and then added it to sauted garlic in olive oil. I tossed it together and added parmesan cheese to the top.
It’s the perfect main dish or side dish, you can’t go wrong.
- 1 Medium Spaghetti Squash, cut in half with seeds removed
- 3-4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (depends on how big your squash is - start with 3 Tablespoons and you can always add another)
- 2 big gloves garlic
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup shredded or grated parmesan cheese + more for garnish
- Fresh parsley for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400°F
- Place spaghetti squash halves cut side down on a baking sheet in the middle rack (no need to oil or season here)
- Bake for 30-35 minutes
- Remove from oven and let cool slightly
- Run a fork along the inside of the baked squash and start to see the strands come off
- Set the spaghetti strands aside
- In a medium skillet over medium heat, add olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes
- Saute garlic for 1-2 minutes, careful not to burn it
- Add spaghetti squash strands into the garlic and oil and toss to coat
- Turn off heat and add parmesan cheese and toss again
- Garnish with extra cheese and fresh parsley