Are you ready for this weekend? You know what's coming right? Yup, another arctic blast. -30 degree temperatures, windchill warnings and local news forecasters warning of dangerously cold conditions. "Don't go outside , your face will freeze off"
Oh yeah, and Valentine Day.
What are your thoughts on the V day? The mr and I, well we could kind of care less, but at the same time, we like the excuse to spend the day together, traditionally going for a hike with the pup (not this year... we would die) and just spending the day together being sweet (pretty much the same way we spend any days off together) We don't get fancy with dinner dates or overly large stuffed animals. No boxes of chocolate, bottles of champagne or fancy undies. We keep it caj, maybe a sweet hand made card covered in glitter (never a store bought.) a stop for a good cup of coffee and an afternoon trip to the plant store to by a new pretty house plant (1. I really hate red roses and 2. I would much rather get a house plant then flowers that will die) But honesty, we just use V day as an excuse to not work and spend the day together, being left alone, eating whatever we want and doing whatever fun stuff we want.
This dish was kinda inspired by being so pretty bright pink, but also it was just what I wanted to eat for dinner. Spaghetti squash doesn't get as much play as it should. Sure it's not the most sweet and nutty of the squashes, but it has a really nice subtle flavor that makes it a fantastic base for pretty much anything. And the beet sauce. Again, it's such a pretty color, but beside that, I can't get enough of them. I love me some roasted beets (way better then any chocolate or sweet treat)
I could lie to you and say that this is the dish that I will be making for me and the mr on Valentines day, but no,this dish already happened this week and the mr got into it, but would rather eat his favorite meal (pizza) for dinner. And I will be eating the left over beet sauce with carrot sticks (this beet sauce id for real.. topped with a little yellow mustard... I could eat it for life) then make a hugmongo batch of popcorn covered in peanut butter. We wiil sit on he couch and watch a lot of Netflix (still working my way through the fresh prince) and maybe a cute Wes Anderson movie. I will be in bed by 9.
But don't mind us old folks here. Go for it. Do up the Valentines Day. Make a pretty dish of food for your sweetheart, or if alone, make it for yourself, especiallyif you are hanging by your lonesome. Valentinesday is about being happy and this dish will make you happy, whether or not you plan on sharing it.
The stuff. One spaghetti squash big enough for at least 2 people (I love left overs so maybe big enough for 4), 2 largish beets, a a small onion. Also grab a clove of garlic of 4, a lemon, the salt and pepper, and some olive oil. Optional, but a very nice addition is a handful of tasted walnuts.
Quick and crank up the oven (make sure you take out the cast iron you left in there from last night), then stick the squash, beets and onion into the hot oven to roast. I stuck them all on a baking sheet and left them completely whole, but if you want, you could chop the beet and onion into chunks and drizzle with oil or you could wrap the beets in foil and bake them that way but really, why go through all that when you can just not? And don't bother peeling them.(unless you think you must.. but you really really don't need too)
And same for the squash. You could cut in half and roast it that way, but again, why when you don't need to.
So anyway, roast the beets and onion until fork tender. And the squash as well (check by stabbing with a fork) All my stuff roasted up pretty much perfectly at the exact same time, but it really depends on the size of your stuff. So check after 40ish minutes.
And once you pull that roasted stuff from the oven, let it cool just enough where you can handle it. Chop the onion into a couple chunks, the beets into smaller chunks and slice the squash in half length wise and set aside.
Grab a blender and toss in the onion, beets the juice of the lemon (start with half) apinch of salt, a few pinches of pepper, and a clove or 2 of garlic (ok, I love raw garlic and used a lot. If you do not like the taste of raw garlic, just toss it with a little oil and stick into the oven with the beets for about 10 minutes. Or you could omit the garlic entirely)
Once all the stuff is in the blender, turn it on. Drizzle in about a tablespoon or two of olive oil and blend until a nice smooth sauce has formed. Taste, season with more salt and pepper if needed. Add the other half of lemon if you think it needs it. You can also add a bit of water to thin it out more.. if you want
So now the squash should be cool enough to handle. Scoop out the seeds and with a fork, scrape up into spaghetti!
Heaps of squash go into bowls then topped with a generous mound of beet sauce. Topped with some roughly chopped toasted walnuts, a sprinkle of pepper and some bits of green stuff (I just diced up some kale)
Look at that. So pretty, so pink and all ready to go. Dinner for 2 with a good bit of left overs for later!
Happy weekend! And Happy Valentines Day if you do it, or if you don't!
Spaghetti Squash with Roasted Beet Sauce
makes 3-4 servings
- 1 medium sized spaghetti squash
- 2 large beets
- 1 small onion
- 1 lemon
- 2-4 cloves garlic
- handful of toasted walnuts (optional)
- olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
Note. You might want to thin out sauce out a bit without the use of a ton of oil. Go ahead and add a little water. Also, I used raw garlic in mine, but some people might not like it raw. Just toss a few cloves of garlic in a bit of oil and stick into the oven for 10-15 minutes with the other stuff to give it a little roast. OR just omit.
Preheat oven to 425.
Stick the onion, beets and squash onto a baking sheet, drzzle the beet and onion with a tiny bit of oil and stick the sheet into the oven. Roast everything until fork tender which should take around 45-50 minutes. (depending on the size of your produce, some thing might take longer or shorter, so just check after 40ish minutes)
Once everything is roasted, let the beets and onion cool just enough to handle and cut into chunks and toss into a blender. Add in the garlic, the juice of the lemon, a few drizzles of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Now turn blender on and blend until smooth.
And the squash. Cut the thing in half and remove the seeds. Then with a fork, scrap the squash from the skin into spaghetti like strands.
Place squash into bowls, sprinkle with salt and pepper, add a drizzle of oil if you want and top with a good hearty heap of beet sauce. Top with more cracked pepper and a few chopped walnuts and maybe add a little something green, you know, to make it pretty.
Serve warm with love and a fork.. your lips might turn pink with beet love.