If you are still reading this after seeing the title of this post, good for you! I am sure that seeing the word 'alfredo' was the only thing that kept you holding on, amiright? I'd never lead you astray, so hear me out on this one. This recipe was just amazing. I have had spaghetti squash several times, and my husband and I often do substitute it for pasta if I've made a big batch of meat sauce--you know, since we are approaching 40 and have the metabolisms to prove it--but I always still make noodles for my girls as if to send the message to them that spaghetti squash is subpar. And it kind of is, or at least it WAS. This is the first thing I've made (oops--the second, I seem to recall a lasagna that was amazeballs, but whether or not I've got it on this blog is a mystery to me, and I'm too lazy to look) with that weird squash that I think is just as good as noodles would be. In this case, you roast your squash (you could do this a day or two before and nothing bad will happen), shred it and then stir it into this divine sauce you whip up in just a few minutes that is loaded with all the delicious goodness of cream cheese, half and half, butter, and parmesan. I've got your attention now, don't I? If chicken is your thing, you add some shredded precooked chicken (here's a great use for rotisserie), or you can add shrimp, or eat it sans meat. I removed some "noodles" from the pan for my vegetarian child before stirring in the chicken for the rest of us. Besides the fact that this is incredibly delicious, the big selling point here is this--MY CHILDREN ATE IT. Ready to take a gamble?
Chicken Spaghetti Sauce Alfredo
-adapted from thegunnysack.com
-2 spaghetti squash (you need about 5 cups of it cooked--I had two small-medium squash and it was perfect)
-4 T unsalted butter
-4 cloves garlic, minced
-2 t. dried sage
-1/4 c flour
-2 c chicken broth
-1 c half and half
-8 oz brick cream cheese, cut into cubes
-1 c parmesan
-2 cups shredded cooked chicken (optional)
-fresh parsley and/or basil for serving
Roast your squash: Cut the squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Did you know that you can make cutting your squash less of a hazard by popping it in the microwave for a couple minutes first? It will soften it enough so that you don't have to go to the ER because you hacked your finger off trying to bust inside. Rub the cut halves of the squash with oil, sprinkle with salt, and place cut side down on a baking sheet (I like to line mine with parchment). Roast at 375 degrees for 45-60 minutes, or until the squash pierces easily with a knife. Let cool enough to handle, then shred strands into a bowl. I like to also squeeze a little excess water out with some paper towels. Set the squash aside while you prepare the sauce (or here is where you can toss it in the fridge until later).
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and sage and cook for about 1 minute. Stir in flour and stir/cook for another minute. Gradually whisk in broth until smooth, then whisk in half and half. Bring to a gentle simmer and let thicken for a few minutes. Stir in cream cheese and parmesan, stirring until melted. Add salt/pepper to taste. Stir in squash, tossing well to coat, and then stir in chicken. Sprinkle with fresh herbs (I used parsley and basil) and add additional parmesan to each serving if desired.