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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Gentlemen, if you haven’t heard already, November 1 is National Men Make Dinner Day. Now, that doesn’t mean you should grab the takeout menus or make dinner reservations. Instead, it’s a chance for you to set aside a little time out of your day to show your loved one you really care by heading to the kitchen, putting on an apron and preparing a delicious meal from the heart.

If you’re feeling a little nervous about trying your hand in the kitchen, let our innkeepers and their tasty bed and breakfast recipes help you out. Here’s a hearty harvest recipe for Tuscan Spaghetti Squash courtesy of New Hampshire’s The Cabernet Inn, a North Conway bed and breakfast.

Tuscan Spaghetti SquashTuscan Spaghetti Squash

Ingredients:

1 medium spaghetti squash
2 Tbs. butter
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
9 sundried tomatoes, julienne and marinated in olive oil for about 1 hr (see note below)
1 portabello mushroom cap, quartered and sliced thin (1/4”)
10 oz white mushrooms, sliced
1 Lb. asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 15oz can chick peas, drained
1 can Contadina diced tomatoes with garlic
2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
2 tsp dried cumin
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray. Cut the squash in half, remove seeds and fibers. Salt and pepper the inside cavity. Place cut side down on the cookie sheet. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Squash is done when the outer skin is easily pierced with a fork.

While the squash is baking, start preparing the sauce. Using a large sauté pan or non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 2 minutes more. Add the all the mushrooms, sundried tomatoes and a dash of salt. The salt will help the mushrooms release their juices. Sauté for about 5 minutes. Add the asparagus. Continue to sauté for another 5 minutes. Now add the chick peas, diced tomatoes, rosemary, cumin, pepper and salt. Let sauté over low heat, stirring occasionally while the squash is finishing.

When the squash comes out of the oven, holding with an oven mitt and using a fork, scrape pulp into a large bowl. The pulp should resemble spaghetti. Using another skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add squash and sauté until all the squash has been coated well. Transfer squash onto a deep serving platter, creating a nest. Fill the nest with the sauce mixture. Enjoy!

Note – Sundried tomatoes can be purchased already cut and in olive oil. In this case you would use roughly 36 julienne strips.

Yields – 4 servings.

Serving suggestions: Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. If you like it on the spicy side, add 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes when you add the other spices.

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