From Too Many Chefs -

October 26, 2005
Spaghetti Squash Fritters

Are these fritters? Or are they pancakes? Maybe some weird spaghetti squash bhaji?

Whatever they are, they're a good way to use spaghetti squash. What? squash again? Oh hush up, you know you like squash and they're only in season for a few months. Enjoy them while you can.

When you roast a spaghetti squash, the flesh separates into long strands that can be scraped out easily with a fork. Often the squash is used as a pasta substitute because of this. I get this, but I don't really get it. Would you use a tomatillo in place of a green apple because they look alike? But I digress.

I roasted a spaghetti squash, scraped it out, and mixed it with a minimal amount of flour and an ample amount of egg to hold the mix together. I'd hoped for more of a ball shape, but the White Sox were busy winning game 3 of the World Series, which distracted me and made me want to make fewer, larger patties of the mix. You should try making smaller balls of the mix and larger patties and see which you like better.

Nutmeg complements the squash perfectly in this mix. The patties were slightly sweet and the nutmeg brought out all those qualities.

Why do I use only half a spaghetti squash for this recipe? Well, I tried a second batch of fritters with a different mix of spices and egg/flour ratio and they ended up in the trash. You can experiment yourself with different spices, or make a double batch of the Spaghetti Squash Fritters with the other half squash.

Or you could use the second half to make spaghetti squash "pasta", I guess. Meh.

Spaghetti Squash Fritters

1/2 spaghetti squash
2 eggs
1/4 cup AP flour (more or less, depending on the squash's moisture content and size)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg (yes, one full teaspoon)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne

olive oil to fry in

Scoop the seeds and strings out of the center of the uncooked squash. Roast the squash, cut side down in a 375 F oven for 45 minutes. Let cool five minutes, then scrape out the strands with a fork. I use a folded over kitchen towel to hold the squash while I scrape as tongs tend to slip or rip the shell of the fully baked squash.

Beat the eggs lightly. Mix the nutmeg, cayenne, salt, and pepper into the eggs. Add the squash to the egg mix. Add the flour to the squash and eggs, and stir together very well.

In a skillet, heat 1/4" oil on medium-high until it shimmers. Drop a large spoonful (or more - I was doing 1/4 cup measures at one point) into the oil. It should sizzle. Fry about one minute or until the bottom is nicely brown. Carefully lift the fritter out of the oil and flip it to fry the other side.

When both sides are golden brown, remove to a plate covered with paper towels and blot. Repeat until done with the entire batch.

If you find the fritters are too wet and not holding together as well as you'd like, add more flour to the mix slowly until you're getting the consistency you want. You don't want raw flour in the fritters, but you don't want them to be sopping, either.

Season as the fritters come out with salt and a dusting of cayenne.

Posted by Barrett in Maryland at October 26, 2005 7:10 AM | TrackBack

Sounds yummy! Two questions: what do the squash look like before you bake them (so I can keep an eye out at the market) and why do you bake them cut side down? I always bake my squash cut side up as liquid gathers in the center. Do you need to bake them in a dish to collect any liquid??

Posted by Meg in Paris on October 26, 2005 at 10:54 AM

They look like gigantic pills, oval and regular, with a light to medium yellow color. The one I used was about a foot in length and a little smaller than a two-liter bottle around.

I bake them cut side down so the little liquid the squash does give up helps steam the flesh by making a natural sealed dome. They don't generate a lot of liquid so you won't have a puddle in the pan to pour out.

Bartleby link to a picture of a spaghetti squash -

Posted by barrett on October 26, 2005 at 11:10 AM

Just this morning I was looking at my bowl of squash wondering what I was going to do with the spaghetti squash. Thanks for the suggestion for the fritters. I'll give them a try tonight. Go Sox!

Posted by Tracy on October 26, 2005 at 11:17 AM

What a great idea -- I love squash, but with the exception of roasting acorn squash and a great butternut squash soup recipe I love, I never know what to do with them.

Posted by Georgia on October 26, 2005 at 1:25 PM

Georgia, that's pretty much how I came up with these (well, that plus a post that'll be a Ppst Of The Week this Saturday). We'd roasted one, souped one, souffle'd one and now what?

I still have pumpkins and a butternut squash at home, but I think I'm going to cool down the post rate on those bad boys.

Posted by barrett on October 26, 2005 at 1:44 PM

I like the idea of a squash souffle -- did it work out? (and by the way, it looks like you've got a little comment spam just above this)

Posted by Georgia on October 26, 2005 at 11:13 PM

Georgia, thanks for pointing it out - I've deleted the comment. It's rare that spammers post to a current item; I've been wondering how long it would take them to work out that it's more intelligent than commenting on old posts (where it's easy for us to block them)!

Posted by Meg in Paris on October 27, 2005 at 2:18 AM

Spaghetti squash is one of those rare things that makes an appearance more than once in our little village store. It's good to have a recipe for something I would never have touched only hearing before about its "pasta" charms. I, too, never understood why you would want to treat it like pasta unless it was to put on parmesan, salt and pepper. This recipe looks wonderful and I will try it out when spaghetti squash heads our way in the Great Wet North.

Posted by Nerissa on October 27, 2005 at 9:15 AM

These were GREAT! Thanks for the recipe.

Posted by Chris on November 3, 2005 at 10:37 AM

Weren't they, though? I had the leftovers a few days after the post and I enjoyed the sweetness of the squash.

Posted by barrett on November 3, 2005 at 10:43 AM