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Butternut Squash/Italian Sausage Ragu over Spaghetti Squash

Posted by Estelle on February 08, 2012 at 18:16:11:

This was a mega hit last night at Bunco. Just thot I'd share if you're interested. Many of the participants didn't know about spaghetti squash and was really excited to discover this pasta alternative. I kept the ragu separate and offered either the spaghetti squash (which was almost all gone!) or mini penne regate pasta. A couple of ladies were excited about the red (tomato) sauce alternative b/c they can't handle tomato products.
I hope you all will give it a try. It's a little disarming at first to see (I mean, who thinks of YELLOW pasta sauce???), but the taste just might help win you over.

~BUTTERNUT SQUASH & ITALIAN SAUSAGE RAGU W/ SPAGHETTI SQUASH~

2 small or 1 large spaghetti squash
1 medium or large butternut squash
Ollive oil
4 large garlic cloves (I only ended up w/ 2 in tonight's recipe)
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg (I'm not sure I put that much,prob'ly 1/2 that amt)
8 fresh minced sage leaves or 1/4 tsp dried sage
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
Salt and Pepper
1 pound bulk Italian sausage-or you can empty the casings (I had sweet Italian)
chicken stock
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven about 375 degrees.
Cut all of the squash in half. Take out seeds. Brush all flesh with olive oil and ONLY salt and pepper the BUTTERNUT squash. Turn the BUTTERNUT squash CUT-SIDE UP and the SPAGHETTI squash CUT-SIDE DOWN on baking pan/s~~you want carmelization/coloring on the butternut squash, not the spaghetti squash. Toss 2-4 cloves of garlic (still in casings) onto the pan w/ the squash. Bake in the oven for about 45 mins-1 hour--until very fork-tender. TAKE OUT THE GARLIC AFTER ABOUT 20-30 MINS--YOU DON'T WANT THAT TO BURN.

In the meantime, brown and ground your Italian sausage, then drain and set aside.
When your squash is done baking, puree the BUTTERNUT squash in the food processor w/ nutmeg, reserved garlic, salt and pepper, and chicken stock until it's nice and "creamy" in texture...not too liquidy. Pour into a pan, add the drained Italian sausage, minced parsley and sage leaves and let that simmer about 15 minutes, adding more chicken stock or even milk to it to keep it a creamy texture. Stir in some parmesan cheese and let stand until your pasta, or spaghetti squash, is ready.

Take a fork and rake along the sides of your SPAGHETTI SQUASH. You'll see that it shreds into strands...like spaghetti. Toss the spaghetti squash w/ salt to taste, and if you'd like, w/ olive oil and/or parmesan cheese (my spaghetti squash was plain w/ salt tonight). Serve on a plate, top w/ your sauce/ragu (in this case, the Butternut squash w/ Italian Sausage), top w/ parmesan cheese, and enjoy. :)



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