Whoa, Squash, who knew?

Seriously, if I find out that anyone I know has been munching on squash and not insisted I try them, I will be forced to reconsider our relationship. Of course I’ve had squash in restaurants, and butternut is something I’ve used before, but this year has still been a total revelation in squash terms. The farmers market stocks a lovely array of squash of varying types, so I bought Gem, Spaghetti and Crown Prince to have a try.With the Gem squash I just cut it in half, drizzled it with olive oil and lots of ground pepper and salt, and roasted it in the oven. I practically stood by the oven and inhaled the thing… it was delicious! The Crown Prince will be going into a soup shortly, so watch this space.

Next up is the Spaghetti Squash. I had already decided I was really in the mood for pizza, so I thought I’d give it a go as a base mixture. The squash almost didn’t make it to the pizza pan though because a sneaky taste when it was roasted nearly led to me demolishing the entire thing.

Anyway, it did make it to the pan and the outcome was a delicious pizza. I wasn’t able to pick the slices up in my hand, so had to eat it with a knife and fork (not the end of the world). I made a pretty big pizza, my pan is 12.5inch diameter. I ate the lot and regretted it, but hey ho that’s life.

I made the pizza sauce myself and added my onion and garlic at this stage, if you preferred, you could add onion and garlic to the base for even more flavor.

What you need…

For the sauce:

  • 1 large red onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • dried thyme and oregano
  • fresh basil and parsley
  • salt and pepper

For the base:

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 2 eggs and 1 egg white
  • 100g grated mature cheddar (mozzarella, or other cheese of your choosing)
  • salt and pepper

topping: You can choose your favorite pizza topping and load it on. I had:

  • rocket
  • salami
  • baby tomatoes
  • goats cheese
  • grated chedder

How to do it…

Preheat your oven to 180ºC/350ºF/Gas 4. 

Cut your spaghetti squash in half and use a spoon to remove the seeds and pulp, then place it cut side down on a roasting pan. Stick it in the preheated oven for about 45mins or until the inside is easy to shred with a fork.

To make the sauce: Put a little olive oil into a saucepan and gently fry off your garlic and onion, making sure it doesn’t burn. Add the dried herbs for 1min before adding the tin of chopped tomatoes and allowing to simmer on a low heat for 10-15mins. Add your chopped fresh herbs towards the end.

When your spaghetti squash is roasted remove it from the oven, scrape out the inside and spread it onto paper towels to cool and dry out. Press paper towels onto the squash to remove any excess liquid. In a bowl, mix your squash, eggs, salt/pepper and cheese together. Put baking paper/parchment onto a pizza tray/oven pan and spread a thin layer of your squash mix onto it. I used a 12.5inch diameter circular pizza tray.

Put your base into the oven for about half an hour until it’s firm to the touch and the edges are lightly browned.

Remove your pizza base from the oven, spread your tomato sauce over the base and then add your chosen toppings. Put the pizza back into the oven for about 15mins until your toppings look nicely cooked.