Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Hazelnut Brown Butter & Pomegranate

Submitted by Chef David Drew of Cambridge Brewing Company, Cambridge

This makes a great side dish and is extremely versatile. Feel free to improvise and use different herbs, nuts, or vinegar in place of the lemon.

Serves 4

1 spaghetti squash
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
½ stick unsalted butter
¼ cup chopped raw hazelnuts
1 small shallot, minced
3 sprigs fresh thyme leaves or 2 chopped sage leaves
Lemon, for squeezing
¼ cup pomegranate seeds (use chopped dried cranberries in a pinch)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Remove the hard stem on top of the squash by banging it with a wooden spoon. Carefully split the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Rub the interior of the squash with some good olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Place the squash, cut side down, on a baking sheet and place into preheated oven. Roast until a sharp knife slides through with only a little resistance (about 30-40 minutes). Remove the pan from the oven, flip the squash and set aside until cool enough to handle. When cool, gently scrape the fibers with a spoon from the tough skin and toss into a large bowl.

Place a medium, nonreactive skillet over medium heat and add the butter. As soon as the large bubbles subside, add the chopped hazelnuts and season with salt and pepper. Gently swirl and toast the hazelnuts in the butter until they take on a light golden color and become fragrant, then add the shallot and herbs and sauté, 1-2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool slightly. Add a squeeze of lemon and add to the bowl of squash. Gently mix the sauce into the squash, garnish with pomegranate seeds, and serve.