pasta poser, you’re not so bad ::::
“Bacon squash” said the sign down the aisle. Bacon squash? Ooooooh, I’ve never tried that, I thought. I love my butternut, my spaghetti squash, and even a few kabocha. Why not delve into the land of beta carotene flavored like bacon? In a vegetable! This I had to try.
I hurried past the grubby taro root, the spotty zucchini, and the graceful, but clunky daikon. Imagine my disappointment when I realized the sign said “Acorn squash.” Just acorn? This is not unlike my experience last fall when I read the sign at the local open-air market, scrawled in black permanent marker “Secret Pears.” I was amused and curious. What makes them secret? I wondered. Are they a variety, long-forgotten in some family-run orchard, sequestered away from the conventional over-farmed orchards, enjoyed by a select few? Are they like a fine wine, flavor bursting when perfectly ripe? A crooked sign and an adjacent pile of apples obscuring my view were my downfall. I came closer and found the sign read “Seckel Pears.” Seckels, those sugary, grainy, almost spicy pears, gracing many a fruit bowl in the fall. Denied.
Spaghetti squash, you are the consolation prize. It’s not that I don’t love you, you are AWESOME, you pasta poser, perfect with scallops, with Parmesan cheese, and just about any pasta sauce ever created. But you are already appreciated. The hoped for chimera of salty bacon and sweet marrow did not come to fruition, but the squishy, browned rounds that I ended up with here weren’t so bad.
If you are a squash lover, these are a winner. If you aren’t sold on the taste of squash, you may need a little more convincing despite the lure of Parmesan. I liked the soft texture and caramelized taste of the browns, with a little sour cream dolloped on top. Need more crunchiness? Try deep frying. And adding a little bacon on top may salvage the whole idea of “bacon squash” that I planted in your head.
- 1 pound cooked spaghetti squash (see below on method)
- ¼ cup flour
- ½ cup Parmesan
- a mix of olive oil and butter, about 3 tablespoons worth
- salt and pepper
- sour cream, for serving
- cayenne pepper (optional)
- For my 3-4 pound squash, I baked it in a 375 degree oven for 1 hour. Cool until okay to handle. Remove seeds and scrape out squash. Snip some of the longer strands so that they won't be too long and stringy.
- Mix squash with flour, Parmesan, salt and pepper.
- Put about ½ tablespoon butter and ½ tablespoon olive oil into non-stick pan (you may need more if using another type of pan) at medium heat.
- Form ¼ cup patties. I ended up with exactly 13.
- Place in pan, pressing to flatten slightly. Cook until browned on one side, then flip.
- Sprinkle with salt.
- Dollop with sour cream to serve with a dash of cayenne pepper.