Photos by Jordan Houdeshell
Jordan Houdeshell

Jordan Houdeshell is a senior studying Elementary Education and Spanish at the University from Maine. She is from Ledyard, Conn. and has been working for the Maine Campus since fall 2014. She is the current Editor in Chief.

 

Ingredients

1 spaghetti squash, halved lengthwise and seeded

1 onion, chopped

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 (14 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes

1 tablespoon dried basil

1 cube vegetable bouillon

Black pepper to taste

1 (15 ounce) can black olives, chopped

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Spray a baking sheet with a thin layer of cooking spray. Place squash halves cut side down on the baking sheet.
  2. Bake squash 35 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a knife can be easily inserted. Remove from oven, and cool.
  3. Meanwhile, spray a non-stick saucepan with cooking spray. Over medium heat, saute the onion and garlic until golden brown. Stir in tomatoes, basil, bouillon cube, and black pepper. Cook for about 15 minutes, or until you have a medium thick sauce.
  4. Remove squash strands with a fork, reserving the shells. Layer each half with a spoonful of the sauce, a layer of spaghetti squash strands, olives, and mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers until shells are full, or until all of the ingredients are used. Top with Parmesan cheese.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until Parmesan cheese melts.

This recipe was found from All Recipes and came up under seasonal recipes.

 

Review:

This week I was looking for a dish that was nice and easy to make, but that I could also potentially make over winter break to woo my family with my amazing cooking skills. The recipe I selected was Baked Spaghetti Squash Lasagna Style, which I found by searching for a holiday recipe. 

Although this recipe probably won’t be the one that I make to impress my family, it was one of the most delicious recipes I have ever made by myself. The one downside was that it was much more hands-on than I expected.

The recipe says that the prep time should have been 30 minutes and it took me another hour and 15 minutes to cook. What the recipe didn’t say was that the time it took to cook was also the time that you would have to be doing things. Cooking the spaghetti squash was easy, I knew what I was doing because I’ve done that before.

The hard part was making the sauce to put in the lasagna, which required almost constant stirring. First you had to saute the onions and garlic until they were golden, which took close to 20 minutes. Then I added the tomatoes, basil and vegetable bouillon to make the sauce and let it thicken, which took close to 20-30 minutes. By this time, the spaghetti squash was done and I could pull it out and make the actual lasagna. At that point, all the hard work was done and I could just put it in the oven and wait 20 minutes for it to be all done. It was worth the taste when I put it all together, but it would have been much easier to just use store-bought sauce.

One thing that was convenient about this recipe was that it was gluten-free and vegetarian. As someone who is gluten-free, it was really nice to have a recipe that I didn’t have to buy special things for to make it gluten free. That was part of the reason I chose to make it. Since it was vegetarian, it was also a good lasagna option for my vegetarian friend.

It was also a reasonably cheap recipe, that would leave me with leftovers for a couple days if I made it for just myself. I spent less than $15 on the ingredients for the recipe and it made four lasagna servings and two more with just spaghetti squash as well as cheese and sauce, making it affordable for a college-student on a budget.

Despite the cook time, I would consider making the recipe again. Having never made homemade sauce, I was surprised at what a difference it made in the taste. The sauce was much more flavorful and fulfilling than the typical sauce that I use with my pasta. It went very well with the cheese and spaghetti squash, which surprised me as I usually find red sauce to be too heavy for spaghetti squash, but it all went together beautifully. I should mention that I did leave the olives out, but if you are an olive lover, that would just add more flavor to the recipe as a whole, which was one of the things that I felt the recipe lacked.

With the colder weather coming, lasagna is the perfect food to come home to at the end of the day; spaghetti squash makes it a lighter option. All in all, this recipe is perfect if you have a simple homework assignment or something you can do while stirring the sauce and have an hour and a half to dedicate to making dinner. It will be worth the time and you might be able to impress someone with your cooking skills.