Sunday, July 6, 2008

Spaghetti Squash with Sausage Filling

1- 3 to 4 pound spaghetti squash
1 pound spicy turkey sausage
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 cup chopped medium onion
3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup marinara sauce
to 6 fresh basil leaves
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
1 Roma tomato sliced very thin
6 slices Mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place whole spaghetti squash on cookie sheet and bake for 1 hour. Pierce skin of squash four times after 20 minutes of baking time. Remove from oven and cool.

While squash is cooling, sauté sausage, red bell pepper, onion and garlic in heavy skillet over medium-high heat until sausage browns and vegetables are tender. About 12 minutes. Mix in marinara sauce and basil and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

Slice cooled spaghetti squash lengthwise and gently remove seeds and discard. Using a fork, pull out squash strands from shells, leaving shells intact. Add strands of squash to meat mixture and when finished mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste. (Do not shred too deeply or shell will not stay intact) Spoon filling into squash shells. (These can be prepared 1 day ahead.) Cover and refrigerate up to one day.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange filled squash halves on baking sheet. Cover with slices of Mozzarella cheese. Lay tomato slices on top of that and sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered until heated through 25 minutes. 35 minutes if previously chilled. Cut each squash half in two and serve with a green salad and garlic bread.

Serves 4

Variation:

You can also use hot Italian sausage, with green pepper. Add fresh basil and Oregano. Top with Provolone cheese in place of Mozzarella.
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