How about a dish of turkey with squash that has nothing to do with Thanksgiving? When I was digging through my files to locate the mini cranberry meringue pies the other day, I also found this healthy, autumnal meal from last October's issue of Living magazine. I have to admit, I haven't always been the biggest fan of spaghetti squash, but I think I've finally come around to really liking it. Here it's treated just like actual spaghetti with the meatballs piled on top of it, and with the sauteed mushrooms and greens, the sweetness of the squash is balanced. Now, you could go all the way with the theme and make a red sauce to top the spaghetti squash, but this dish was kept light with a sauce of simply simmered broth and extra vegetables.
A nice, big spaghetti squash was split down the middle lengthwise, seeds were removed, and it was roasted until tender which took about 45 minutes. When it was cool enough to handle, the skinny strands of squash were scraped with a fork into a colander and allowed to drain. Meanwhile, onion and garlic were sauteed and allowed to cool. Half of them were mixed into the ground turkey meatballs, and the other half were reserved for the sauce. The meatballs were browned in a large saute pan and then removed to a plate. Next, sliced mushrooms were sauteed, the reserved onion and garlic mixture was added to them, the meatballs were placed back in the pan, everything was covered with some stock, and it was left to simmer for a few minutes. Last, greens were added, and they could have been any greens but I used some local kale, and they were left to wilt before serving. The spaghetti squash was placed on plates and topped with the meatballs, mushrooms, greens, and sauce and hit with some grated parmesan.
I can't even remember how I last prepared spaghetti squash and why I then avoided it for so long, but I'm very glad I finally tried it again. With a dish that looks so much like standard spaghetti and meatballs, you don't even stop to consider that what you really have is a light and healthy, vegetable-heavy meal in disguise. And, now, enough of this talk of turkey with no mention of the big holiday. It's time for Thanksgiving week.